Low carbon economy and energy issues are the joint objectives of two Interreg Europe projects, RESINDUSTRY – Policies for Renewable Energy Sources in Industry and SME POWER – SMEs Powering a Low Carbon Future. Both projects closely cooperate and pulled together by forming a joint Regional Energy Stakeholder (RES) group.
Regular local stakeholder meetings are key for successful project implementation. On 18 March 2021, 14 members of the joint RES group met online to discuss the EU funding service, national business grants possibilities for companies, project activities and outcomes of interregional workshops, and action plan design. In Finland, RESINDUSTRY by LAB University of Applied Sciences and SME POWER is managed by Heinola City.
New EU funding advisory service
Senior Advisor from the governmental innovation and funding agency Business Finland, Valtteri Vento, presented the new, comprehensive EU funding advisory and information service targeted at enterprises. The idea behind the establishment of such a service was the lack of centralized and clear information on the EU funding opportunities both in terms of grants and market-based EU funding. The service operates under the guidance of the Ministry of Employment and Economy and other stakeholders. A clear advisory service and information sharing will be built through a network of EU funding experts, allowing national actors to benefit from the EU funding. The service is intended for companies, research institutes as well as public authorities and other interested parties. A dedicated advisory service website and a phone service have been launched in spring 2021.
RESINDUSTRY presented the recently published video titled RESINDUSTRY & Päijät-Häme Climate Action Roadmap, which describes the project impact on the regional roadmap. In SME POWER, Energy Champions have been selected. In Finland, Weckman Steel, the largest Finnish roofing company has been chosen and an interview has been recorded: SME POWER – HEINOLA Energy Champion Juha Simola.
Video 1: RESINDUSTRY & Päijät-Häme Climate Action Roadmap. (LAB Focus 2021)
Regional Action Plans
One of the key outcomes of any Interreg Europe funded project is the regional action plan design and thus regional policy development. Both RESINDUSTRY and SME POWER will create their action plans with a specific focus based on the project aims. However, some actions could be overlapping as the development of a low-carbon economy in the spotlight of both projects.
Graphic overview of the related steps in the RESINDUSTRY action plan process
Picture 1. The RESINDUSTRY action plan process includes several steps. The progress is indicated by the yellow arrow. (Image: Katerina Medkova).
Through interregional cooperation and by sharing good practices and exchanging knowledge and expertise, the project partners and their stakeholders can learn from each other. That is inspirational and necessary for designing the regional action plans, where the selected good practices and learning outcomes create the action plan frame.
Katerina Medkova works as an RDI specialist at LAB University of Applied Sciences and acts as a Project & Communication Manager in the RESINDUSTRY project.
Jaana Myllyluoma acts as a Senior Adviser in FCG Finnish Consulting Group and coordinates the SME POWER activities on behalf of Heinola City.