As outlined in the European Strategic Energy Technology Plan (SET-Plan), energy technologies will be crucial to successfully combat climate change and to secure world and European energy supply. Achieving Europe 2020 and 2050 targets and visions on greenhouse gas emissions, renewable energy and energy efficiency will require the deployment of more efficient and new technologies.
In this framework, fifteen leading European Research Institutes have taken up the challenge to found a European Energy Research Alliance (EERA).
The key objective of the EERA is to accelerate the development of new energy technologies by conceiving and implementing Joint Research Programmes in support of the SET-Plan pool and integrate activities and resources, combining national and Community sources of funding and maximising complementarities and synergies.
An overall number of 13 Joint Programmes have been launched since EERA's founding:
- Photovoltaic, Wind Energy, Smart Grids and Geothermal (launched at the SET-Plan event held in Madrid in June 2010)
- Carbon Capture and Storage, Materials for Nuclear and Bioenergy (launched at the SET-Plan event held in Brussels in November 2010)
- Concentrated Solar Power and Ocean Energy (approved by the EERA Executive Committee in April and officially launched at the SET-Plan event, in Warsaw, November 2011).
- Smart Cities”, Advanced Materials and Processes for Energy Applications, Energy Storage and Fuel Cells and Hydrogen (approved by the EERA Executive Committee in November and launched during the SET Plan Conference in Warsaw, always in November 2011)
More than 2700 Researchers from over 150 public research centres and universities are actively collaborating today in the EERA Joint Programmes, identifying and bringing together national centres of excellence in the energy research sector, and highlighting common needs, objectives and areas of research for the 2013-2020 programming period.