Glasgow to lead £3m European energy future
Published by Anne Marie Hughes on Thu 26 Jul 12 @ 16:18
A major project worth more than £3 million will secure a bright future for low carbon energy in Glasgow and three other major European cities after gaining the green light from the European Commission.
The STEP-UP project will be led by the University of Strathclyde in partnership with Glasgow City Council, ScottishPower and the European cities of Gothenburg, Ghent and Riga. It is hoped that the project will bring together excellence in energy planning and accelerate the development of innovative energy projects throughout Europe
Industrial and research partners in each of the cities will work together to significantly enhance their low carbon energy strategies and tackle the Europe 2020 energy targets for improved energy efficiency, growth of renewable energy and carbon emissions reduction.
Leader of Glasgow City Council, Cllr Gordon Matheson said: "This project is an example of how the Sustainable Glasgow partnership is bringing together higher education and the public and private sectors to deliver benefits for communities.
"Together, we are cultivating the knowledge, skills and expertise to galvanise Glasgow's position as centre of excellence in the low carbon economy - and attract investment and jobs to the city."
The STEP-UP project is closely linked to Sustainable Glasgow, a city-wide partnership formed to help Glasgow become one of the most sustainable cities in Europe - and one of the best places to live and work. It brings together partners from higher education, the public and private sectors to work with local people, communities and businesses.
Additional support from the Scottish Cities Alliance will expand the impact of the project to all Scotland's cities after £50,000 was committed from the Cities Investment Fund. The alliance aims to attract investment, create jobs and help Scotland's cities compete more successfully on the international stage.
Professor Sir Jim McDonald, Principal of the University of Strathclyde, said: "As a leading international technological university, Strathclyde is well placed to lead this innovative project and maximise the capacity of our world-class research to help shape the future for energy planning. This is the leading project of its kind in Europe and will help industry and government meet the major energy challenges in the years ahead."
The STEP UP project will get underway in Autumn of this year - and will finish in Spring 2015. As a part of the project the University of Strathclyde will develop a new Masters course in Sustainable City Planning and Implementation to be taught with other Universities in Europe.
The funding was secured in face of stiff competition from cities across Europe and has been obtained through the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7). FP7 supports the European Union's strategy to become the most dynamic competitive knowledge-based economy in the world. Fundamental to that strategy is research, education and innovation.