On the 7th of February, under European Industry Days – Unlocking the future: EU industrial ecosystems on the path to the green and digital transition, RE4Industry Consortium organized a local event gathering experts from Energy Intensive Industries to discuss how is decarbonisation foreseen by the industry, and what possible solutions are there to further support this transition.
Tom Berendsen, Rapporteur for the Updated New Industrial Strategy for Europe in the Industry, Research, and Energy Committee (ITRE) at the European Parliament, opened the session, bringing up an essential question that calls for European response: “what does the sector need to make a successful transition?” Because, as he proceeded to explain, “(…) a green deal should not only be demanding more of Industry, but it should also be a roadmap facilitating industry to go through the transition and grasp the opportunities while doing so”.
Regarding the everchanging geopolitical landscape, the Rapporteur mentioned that his report would not only address the energy transition but also how could industry become less dependent in that setting, and how to maintain competitiveness while going through the transitions. – “For that, I think we need clear roadmaps per industrial ecosystem on how to get to climate-neutral – what is needed to get there in terms of infrastructures, technologies, and scales”, adding that “huge investments” would also be needed. Mr. Berendsen revealed that “the ambition is to develop a true EU industrial policy that turns the green deal into a growth strategy and that creates high-quality jobs in the EU for our citizens”.
The second part of the debate focused on the invited panelists and their views on the sectoral needs and potential solutions for decarbonisation. Coming from different sector areas, we had Magdalena Vallebona from Cerame-Unie; Christian Leroy from European Aluminium; Nick Keramidas from the European non-ferrous association – Eurometaux; Christiane Nelles from BV Glas; and Fabiola Tovar sharing her inputs as a member of the Digital Industry Team from Research Center for Energy Resources and Consumption – Circe – the coordinator partner of this project. This allowed an intersectoral perspective on potential solutions for the energy transition from steel, aluminium, and chemical industries to come through and despite the sector, there was a clear common understanding of the industry needs: stable regulatory frameworks, improvement of structures, fundings and investment in innovation.
Moderated by Rod Janssen from Energy Efficiency in Industrial Processes – EEIP, the discussion allowed the identification of some of the principal sectoral barriers when it comes to energy transition and the challenges Energy Intensive Industries face towards decarbonisation.
The RE4Industry team, in the voices of Karolina Dutkiewicz-García from EEIP and Emmanouil Karampinis from the Centre for Research and Technology Hellas – CERTH still had time to better present the project, by sharing its goals, current progress and solutions with all the participants. A small demonstration of the mapping tool developed by Re4industry, which makes finding info on the carbon emissions of a specific facility, sector, or country an easy task, also took place!