With the targets for 2030 for renewables and energy efficiency agreed, consent on the other parts of the Clean Energy Package on the horizon including the new Energy Union Governance regulation, and the discussion on the EU's long-term contribution to the Paris Agreement being launched with the 2050 strategy, the SET-Plan Conference was not short of topics to discuss. Research and innovation are a sine-qua-non for the energy transition to be successful, to meet the EU's objectives for 2030 and 2050, and for the EU to develop cutting edge solutions that will be in demand worldwide. The ''Horizon Europe'', the EC proposal for a European level financial support framework from 2021-2027, reflects this important role for research and innovation.
This year's SET-Plan Conference took stock on progress towards the SET-Plan priorities, following the finalization of the relevant Implementation Plans and aims to identify how publicly and privately funded Research and Innovation efforts, at European and national level, contribute to the EU's energy transition. It highlighted the importance of making synergies and developing partnerships among public and private actors to implement R&I activities that can create a real impact. The discussions addressed the challenges towards the objectives for 2030 and 2050, the financing instruments to support R&I, the EU's position in the world, but refered to the importance of engaging cities and regions. Dedicated discussions on panels focused on specific parts of the energy system such as:
- Citizens in the energy transition;
- Industry as a facilitator of clean energy feedstock;
- Energy Systems and Networks;
- Clean energy production- Renewables for 2050;
There were also side events, such as excursions to showcase projects in the City of Vienna, a brokerage event on the Horizon 2020 project proposals and subject-related workshops as well as an evening reception by the mayor of Vienna.
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