In September 2020, the European Commission launched a €1 billion call for research and innovation projects that respond to the climate crisis and help protect Europe's unique ecosystems and biodiversity. The Horizon 2020-funded European Green Deal Call will spur Europe's recovery from the coronavirus crisis by turning green challenges into innovation opportunities. More information about this can be found in the attached press release or here: https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/ip_20_1669
Among new calls is listed "Accelerating the green transition and energy access Partnership with Africa". This action responds to the Joint Communication for a Comprehensive Strategy with Africa adopted on 9/3/2020, which highlights that innovation is key to enable African countries to pursue sustainable pathways to development through a low-carbon, climate resilient and green growth trajectory, leapfrogging fossil fuel technologies. It will contribute to the present R&I Partnership on Climate Change and Sustainable Energy of the EU/AU High-Level Policy Dialogue on Science, Technology and Innovation that is expected to strongly contribute to Action 1 of the Comprehensive Strategy with Africa.
Actions should demonstrate innovative sustainable energy solutions that consider climate adaptation and mitigation potential compared to other technologies/solutions in the African social, economic and environmental contexts. The solutions may address:
- development of renewable energy sources, including solutions for off-grid communities, and their integration into the existing energy system, considering the generation of renewable energy, the transmission, and the use of storage/battery systems.
- energy efficiency
Solutions should consider both urbanised and rural contexts in Africa, and the ongoing water-energy-food nexus action, with the aim of providing sustainable energy access (electricity/cooking) and/or creating improved health, economic wealth and jobs (productive use of energy/energy efficiency).
Actions should design, construct, commission and operate the demonstration installation. Actions should also develop and implement a tailored value chain approach, identifying the most suitable manufacturing value chains, on the basis of the local context, local material supply chain(s) and local workforce, with the objective of ensuring sustainable local economic development. Actions should also include the identification of technical, vocational and educational needs of the workforce and propose relevant training and qualification activities. Actions should finally define a market and business strategy to ensure impact through a quick and viable commercial take-up of the technological solution demonstrated.
Proposals should include a life cycle analysis showing the impact of the proposed solutions compared to other technologies/solutions on the environment, on climate change targets and on the social and the economic dimensions, taking a cradle to grave viewpoint. Where relevant, proposals should consider adopting a circular economy approach, aligned with the European Green Deal priorities.
In line with the Union’s strategy for international cooperation in research and innovation, international cooperation is encouraged. As the demonstration installation will be located in Africa, relevant African partners have to participate in the implementation of the project. A balanced consortium between European and African partners will be considered an asset in the evaluation.
The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of between EUR 5 to 10 million would allow the specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.
The demonstrators should provide evidence of the following short-term expected impacts:
- technologically reliable and economically viable solutions;
- proven positive environmental, health, climate, social and economic impacts of the renewable energy solutions, by putting in place measures and mechanisms in line with the highest European Environmental and Social standards (see ESIA procedure), and taking into consideration the upcoming taxonomy principles and mechanism;
- climate adaptation and climate mitigation potential of the solutions compared to other technologies/solutions;
- strengthening of the joint EU-AU Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Partnership efforts, with emphasis on improving the visibility of EU Science Diplomacy actions in Africa.
More details about this call can be found on this webpage:
The EU Delegation to the African Union is organising a Webinar on the 26th October to answer questions related to this call. To register for a Webinar, please go here: https://eutoau.blumm.it/event/ar/1/evento