K4RES-H project has run from January 2005 until the end of June 2007.
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This project has analysed public policies supporting renewable heating and cooling (RES-H), It has identified best practice and it has developed concrete guidelines applicable at local, regional, national and European level. The project had a cross-sectoral nature, as it has analysed a number of key issues, first it has looked in parallel at the different RES-H technologies: solar thermal, biomass and geothermal, and then it has integrated the results for policy guidelines applicable to RES-H in general.
Until recently, renewable heating and cooling (RES-H) received little political attention. At EU level and in most Member States, most of the discussion about the promotion of renewable energies was focused on renewable electricity. In December 2005, in its Biomass Action Plan, the European Commission announced that it will work towards a Directive to promote renewable heating and cooling. In addition, the Initiative Report of the European Parliament is giving a strong signal to the European Commission and to the Member States. This development is welcome and necessary. However, due to the traditional lack of attention for RES-H policies, there is a strong need for clear analyses of the existing experience and possible guidelines.
The K4RES-H project plan was developed in early 2004, in expectation of these political developments. The project's aimed to support the discussion on RES-H policies by producing and promoting a comprehensive Action Plan for RES-H in Europe.
There is an urgent need for increasing information and awareness about the RES-H sector, which is essential for reaching the EU target of 12% RES contribution to the gross inland energy consumption. It has become apparent that knowledge about the most suitable support policies for RES-H is still scarce. Support policies for RES-H tend to be weak and fragmented. A comprehensive approach to support RES-H does not exist yet.
The Action Plan for Renewable Heat in Europe presents integrated guidelines for each of the 5 key issues and serves as a blueprint for strong and coherent RES-H policies. It aims at providing stakeholders and policy makers with detailed information and clear guidelines based on the existing experience with policies to promote RES-H. This analysis of best practice policies should contribute to design new support schemes able to drive the EU beyond a doubling of the current renewable share of its heating and cooling supply.
K4RES-H was built around the analyses of five Key Issues crucial to the success of policies aimed at promoting RES-H:
These Key Issues were analysed separately for each of the three main RES-H technologies (solar thermal, bioheat and geothermal heat), but based on a common methodology that guarantees that the results of each analysis are comparable and can be integrated into guidelines for RES-H in general.
The final result of the work consists of guidelines for each of the Key Issues. Based on these guidelines, an Action Plan for the Promotion of RES-H and of each of the single technologies.
The full version of these guidelines and Action Plans are available on line, while summaries have been printed. The dissemination activities included a Renewable Heating Policy Conference in Brussels and four regional workshops that were held in different areas of Europe in the first half of 2007. All the results of the project are available on this website.
with the support of Intelligent Energy Europe
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