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Year 2012

 

eetings & Events Attended

 

28-12-2012 Brussels Business Summit

  • For Belgian and world economy, simple, applicable plans, oriented for results are needed with use of public sources, regular but also innovative financing and with real implementing measures.

  • Waste produced in all stages of life (agriculture, food preparation, processes, etc.) are the new resource for new products of the future.

  • 4 Fs: Food-Feed-Fuel-Fiber--> all compete for land and we must see how to comply with all needs for humans and citizens.

  • A citizen is paying 90 € / day to treat waste (in Belgium).

  • Banks require verification on the availability of biomass before deciding to fund any biomass projects.

  • Agricultural by-products or residues are promoted via new chemical procedures to produce energy, opposing use of new plants that demand new land, in order not to compete with food.

  • Need to take care of water use and land use as well.

  • In fuel use there is a vertical structure from on company, but in bio-based procedure many participants take part (farmers, transporters, chemical firms, MS authorities, etc.).

  • New skills are needed to use all that, even new skills for farmers.

  • Interest from EU is given to infrastructure (energy transfer, roads, etc.).

  • Need to find a way to address the third countries civil conditions, compared to the more advanced ones.

  • Energy efficiency, water efficiency, food security, fish existence, etc., are goals that within RIO+ were agreed and decided EU to contribute. Early 2013, a plan will be published with the EU efforts on that approach.

  • EU is far more advanced in the sustainable efforts than the USA.

  • There is a lack of global leadership.

  • Problematic (neither ratified nor transposed nor implemented, etc.) older decisions of UN continue to cause serious problems.

  • Comments like ' USA politicians are corrupt', 'the oil lobby is powerful and is funding numerous campaigns', were made by speakers.

  • The oC change discussed, is possible if green technologies are implemented immediately to many sectors. It may look realistic, but from political point off view this is not possible to believe.

  • Bottom up approach for solutions and contribution is taking off (cities, citizens, etc, are more willing to act and do so).

  • Top Down (authorities (EU, UN, etc.) is not that active in realistic -ready and agreed to be implemented- measures.

  • 'Sustainomics' were briefly presented by the 'father' of the term (Mr Mohan Munasinghe).

  • Sustainability is acting as a motive to produce new products, services etc.

  • More info on sustainability makes also more sense for firms trying to keep up with public opinion so more business is opening.

  • 40 cents per dollar is the current cost for firms to get sustainable globally.

 

Link:www.bsds.vito.be/agenda/Pages/agenda.aspx

 

06-12-2012 ACEA Annual Transport Policy Event 2012, 'Moving with the times: How can Policy reflect changing transport demands?'

  • Stakeholders (policy makers, key players and energy sector) participated in this annual meeting looking on the transport landscape of today and on future perspectives

  • Largest share of transport is road, then sea. Only a small fraction of transport uses rail.

  • Older trucks (Euro I, II, III) contribute to air pollution by about 50% of PM and 30% of CO2 emissions in EU.

  • Euro VI technology must be vastly implemented in practice.

  • Due to increased cost and weight of trucks, MS firms will probably go to Euro V to avoid also increased cost.

  • Tolls and they way they are implemented, will play a significant role to the expansion of road freight transport and fleet renewal.

  • EU's global competitiveness advantage and expertise via sophisticated, complying clean trucks must be maintained.

 

Mr Oettinger (Commissioner for energy):

  • 'Sustainable mobility and freight transportation must be pursuant to consumers demands.

  • Fuel efficiency is a must, CO2 reduction efforts and cost instruments are important.

  • Alternative power transport modes away from oil must be developed.

  • Natural gas blended with biomethane must be explored as fuel.

  • Natural Gas (NG) use will be considered as internal market advantage of competitiveness

  • Promotion of bio-fuels (advanced bio-fuels) is a must and will get our attention.

  • Fuel labelling must be established in a clear way, providing information to citizens and avoiding confusion for consumers.

  • A Directive will be published on the development of bio-fuels before the end of 2012.

  • Electric mobility is a target, including hydrogen short and long term perspectives.

  • Smart charging (from electric grid) is a huge target'.

 

Mr Kallas (Commissioner for Transport):

  • 'As expected road freight transport is about to increase.

  • The congestion issue was not scrutinised and remains an important issue. It must be resolved. Modal shift is needed.

  • His intention is to push rail to a more flexible system.

  • Infrastructure (road, rail, ports, etc.) still remains a serious problem.

  • According to foreigners (USA and others), EU has still the best infrastructure globally.

  • Weight and dimension rules, tolls and other changes will be revised in early 2013.

  • New aerodynamic forms must be used as much as possible

  • My using modern, harmonised tolling systems, crossing EU will be easy and efficient.

  • Funding of infrastructure from taxes imposed on tolls and fuel will decrease and by the use of bio-fuels the available funding sources will not suffice. New funding solutions are required.

  • Big (Mega) trucks are not an easy issue to be agreed, as objection in major (as part of EU crossing routes, e.g. Austria) EU MS is quite strong'.

 

Chairman of the ACEA:

  • 'Rail is neither cleaner nor friendly for the environment as a transport mode, contrary to the common belief.

  • The main goal is to reduce the fuel consumption by 20% based on the figures of 2005'.

 

Andreas Renschler (CEO of Daimler Trucks):

  • 'CO2 regulation is not needed. Fuel efficiency is important and customers use the principle every day.

  • If noise is to be reduced to 67 db, the CO2 will rise by 6,2 %

  • NOx can be lowered to 0% but CO2 will go up by 25%

  • Truck manufacturers, policy makers and users must go together'.

 

Link: http://www.acea.be/news/news_detail/acea_annual_transport_policy_event_2012

 

27-11-2012 AECC Technical Seminar on Emissions from Non-Road Mobile Machinery

  • A full day Seminar covering the latest legislation and developments related to engines covered by Directive 97/68/EC.

  • Presentations were delivered on EU future legal proposals, air quality and locally suggested for implementation measures, quality and impacts on urban areas, black carbon and influence in global warming and human health, MS experience on implemented measures on air quality improvement, retrofitting and test results on various emissions cleaning methods and equipment.

 

Link: www.aecc.be/en/Publications/NRMM_Technical_Seminar.html

 

28 & 29-11-2012 Trans-European Transport Network Days (TEN-T Days)

  • The EU Commission's TEN-T Programme, dedicates financial support towards the realisation of important transport infrastructure projects. Key stakeholders are the EU Member States which are the beneficiaries of the projects funding. This programme is of high value and will continue to gain funding.

  • Two main lines are included in the TEN-T funding scheme: The Annual Programme and the Multi-Annual Programme.

  • Different participation criteria apply to each one.

  • More than 1 000 amendments have been posted for the new programme. Those amendments of the past programmes must also be evaluated and included if considered useful.

  • In this programme, with many Priorities, studies and support studies (adaptation to climate change, reduction of administrative costs, change of storage energy facility on board, alternative fuels and propulsion, market innovation, etc.), testing in all networks, nature projects, Private Public Partnerships (PPPs) , studies promoting PPPS, studies on potential use of PPPs implementation, nature and multi-modal environmental projects, among others are funded.

  • EU has a firm decision on a modal shift from transport by road to rail by 30% by 2030 and 50% by 2050.

  • Research is not funded under TEN-T. Neither are demos, trial or prototype testing projects. Only real life, applicable and transferable projects will be funded.

  • All modes of transport are eligible for funding.

  • At least two (2) Member States must be involved.

  • Rejection reasons and specific details of prioritised projects were discussed.

 

Link: http://tentea.ec.europa.eu/en/news__events/events/2012_ten-t_november_events.htm

 

21-11-2012PROGRESSIVE URBAN DEVELOPMENT - PES

 

  • In Herten – Germany -a wider area where 5 mil people are living) a EU-Municipal H2 production plant is established and running. Using wind power from one (1) turbine at a distance of 1,2 km the power plant produces H2 via electrolysis and electric power is used to run electric bicycles, vehicles etc.

  • A precise energy plan is drafted on the needs and stay of the art technology.

  • Municipality of Naestved, Denmark, manages a huge budget, as a lot of people are working for the Municipality with many duties and obligations according to domestic legislation.

  • A sophisticated public transport plan must be introduced, to provide solutions for people coming to the city from the outskirts. In a similar plan, when the goal set was a modal shift from private car to public transport use, a reduction of 40% car use was achieved in the city.

  • Sustainable energy efficiency in Naestved, is certified by DGNB (a German firm).

  • In Sjostad (Stockholm), the municipal operated public houses, use appliances, installed by the building developer, of class A and some additional requirements for energy efficiency are also implemented.

  • In Sjostad, citizens meetings are organized for every issue that concerns their area, or affected in any way.

  • In a Municipality in Denmark, a congestion tax, although denied by the government and municipality, was asked by the public and it was finally imposed. As a result congestion was reduced by 40 – 50%.

  • Many energy related issues are coming from Europe via Covenant of Mayors, and going back as advice or measures, or examples!

  • It is important to learn from each other and also see the different examples and extend the idea of sustainable planning.

  • It is important to involve people.

  • Changes are made to payments systems, so new technology is used but there is not enough staff to deal with all that.

  • Facebook, internet, modern techniques, etc., are used but not so many people were touched, especially older people.

  • Private sector is interested when an opportunity arises. If a good proposal is delivered then it could be implemented.

  • Some people are there and willing to work. They are needed, but cannot be given a blank check. Each proposal must be weighted carefully, if it creates jobs etc.

  • Cost for building new, energy efficient buildings, was claimed to be 25-30% more expensive than normal structures, but it was actually 2-3% (during the 90s). So new ideas and techniques, innovations and materials developed, are always helpful.

 

Link:www.pes.cor.europa.eu/feps.html

 

 

17-10-2012 CEN-CENELEC SME Toolkit Presentation

  • The SME Toolkit was officially announced, with short presentations on its functionality, case studies, links for additional information, etc..

  • A tool by which members of CEN/CENELEC are allowed to provide comments is under revision.

  • The e-learning project, supported by EU Commission, will start in beginning of 2013. It will allow learning by use of computer and will be easily accessible and simple to understand and use.

 

Link: www.cencenelec.eu/sme/SMEST/Pages/default.aspx

 

11 & 12-10-2012 Food, Agriculture and Bio-economy Event – FAB, EU Commission

  • Research: turning money into knowledge (books, texts, programmes, training, etc.).Europe is still leading at this path.

  • Innovation: turning knowledge into money (via business, market, manufacturing, etc.). EU is not doing well at all and signs are not optimistic.

  • Innovation is driven by demand and cannot be pushed.

  • Landfill directive: calls to reduce Municipal landfills by 35% of the levels of 1995. EUP is asking for a complete landfill ban by 2012 and COM is more or less agreeing to that.

  • There is a huge lack of cohesion of policy on the bio-economy, so corrective measures should be implemented as soon as possible.

  • 50% of our food is wasted in homes, restaurants, supermarkets.

  • Our habits must change and must not proceed with the same ways as before.

  • We should change our ways based on ideas, knowledge and innovation that we have developed in EU.

  • We should also use less meat and meat products, so bio-economy could take a different course.

  • A lot of food supplements are needed to increase nutritional value of bread and other flower products.

  • Millers used to select and grind wheat according to proteins values but not any more. Now flower is chosen according to price, but the quality of bread is not good, so added supplements are needed for color, volume, nutrition values, appearance, etc.

  • In EU, the population accounted about 85 mil in 2008 over 65 years and in 2060 is expected to reach 150 mil.

  • Food strategies are to be prepared and implemented to increase food supply for EU citizens, as nutritional problems are approaching fast.

  • Food programmes from FP2 to FP7 are increasing their funding to study the nutritional sustainability issue and produce methodologies and measures (Activities 2.2, 2.3, etc.) for resolving related problems.

  • Genomics should be seen in a careful way beneficial aspects are quite intriguing.

 

Lins: http://ec.europa.eu/research/index.cfm?pg=events&eventcode= 21CC905F-CC63-6DF7-ADC14E7C95123065

 

09-10-2012 OPEN DAYS – Covenant of Mayors (CoMo).

  • Comparison of the cluster by using an example of a grape (source) and turning it to wine in a bottle, via thousands of collaborators in trade agreements and exchanges in EU.

  • 600 – 800 grapes are needed to make a bottle of wine, but clusters use 5-8 issues per agreement.

  • Maximum running period for a cluster is 18 months.

  • Finance: 50% by EU and 50% by the project participants.

  • Before applying for funding on creation of a cluster, a check must identify other similar running in parallel projects and then a cluster should be formed with the experience already gathered by others, and disseminated via various ways, taken into account as an advantage.

  • For EU Commission, the added value of clusters is the dissemination of good practices, information, methodologies, discussions, strategic common thinking.

  • Good practices guides, manuals, methodologies are quite helpful as long as they are created in a way that transferability may be implemented. As a result, the participants individual programmes forming the clusters must comply with the same principles.

 

Link: www.eumayors.eu/news_en.html?id_news=389

 

25 & 26- 09-2012 CEN-CENELEC: Standard Days

  • Most Standards come from industry. Usually 3 yrs are needed for the development of a Standard.

  • Around 80% of Standards are created by the wish of the industry, users etc. and not by the legislators.

  • Quantification is very difficult to be precised, members should be able to provide the answer.

  • They become 'mandatory' in action, except some old approach Directives.

  • All standards are voluntary in their application, but more benefits are expected if they become mandatory.

  • Any one can propose a standard. Participants in the drafting of the standards include: Consumers, NGOs, Organizations (private or state), trade unions, etc.

  • The proposal goes to the WG which drafts the text, after that is sent to the Technical Committee, inquiry follows, then inclusion of results of the inquiry, VOTE follows and then the final text is delivered.

  • In order for a standards to become a EU standard it is required to get 71% of the votes. If not it must be re-examined and revised by technical committee. Votes are weighted according to the GDP of members states with voting right. (Germany and France have a 'bigger' vote than Malta).

  • Languages used for comments are English, French & German

  • National authorities translate the comments

  • All persons, SMES, etc. can provide comments. National web sites publish the texts for introduction of comments.

  • All work at national level on the preparation of National standard must stop as soon as CEN-CENELEC starts procedures for the creation of the specific standardization – this is called 'the stand still clause'.

  • A short number of countries must support the creation of the new standard. There are some additional regulations and evaluations for starting the procedure.

  • It is not in the Standard to provide or point out a market need or an aim. This depends of the market, the users, the stakeholders. Standards provide guidelines not market analysis or direction.

  • The EU Standard, replaces at the end all National Standards (e.g. around 33 National standards are eliminated by the implementation of one (1) CEN standard).

  • A Standard is excellent for import and export of products as the same criteria are applicable. It ensures the safety of products by implementing the required compliance with the relevant Directives, Regulations etc. .

  • By a directive and the mandate, (political wish), the Standard is connected to law.

  • There are numerous types of standards (Fundamental-terminology, conventions, signs, symbols,- Test methods and analytical, Specs for products, Organization and management).

  • Patents and loyalty rights are included in the Standards in a specific way so that the Standard would not be impeached and prevent its implementation. Relevant specific provisions do exist and require attention.

  • The ISO -CEN standards are readjusted internally (from CEN/ ENELEC)

  • IPR (Intellectual Property Rights): Referring to a number of distinct types of creations of the mind for which temporary property rights are recognized by the law.

  • National authorities provide the copyright documents.

  • Under IPR, certain exclusive temporary rights are recognized for intangible assets.

  • Caution must be given to the moral rights. The moral rights belong to the creator, but he may loose the exploitation rights or commercial purposes rights.

  • EU Commission interacts among MS authorities to coordinate and keep aligned the principals for export and internal market regulation.

 

Link: www.cencenelec.eu/aboutus/ourservices/Training/StandarDays/Pages/default.aspx

 

19 & 20-09-2012 EU – China Mayors’ Forum

  • The SUP - Sustainable Urban Park in Chengyang, comprises of50% residential, 25% Business (offices), 25% Showrooms, exhibitions etc..

  • Key points of design:

  • Sun position for solar and sustainable optimal energy use,

  • Prevailing wind for natural ventilation of the buildings,

  • Walking distance (with 5 km/h, in 5 minutes a 400 meters perimeter is covered, including most important parts of the park,

  • Friendliness of the areas inside this perimeter,

  • Building design differences, important to provide the 'belong' feeling,

  • Water consumption, taken into account,

  • Social aggregation spaces, included for human meetings, including additional socialize places,

  • Transportation systems (flows for walking space, bicycles, public transportation etc.) in separated lanes, taking into account pollution reduction, etc.

  • Energy and water are very cheap in China at the moment, but it will be more expensive in the future.

  • Sustainable construction is very important. It will prove to be a great investment for the present with huge future returns.

  • As expected from 2010 to 2015 labor and production cost will increase by around 35% in China.

  • Some firms are relocating inside China, to other areas, where local consumption is also estimated and wanted to add to the benefits of the relocation.

  • Specialized Chinese firms provide assistance to EU firms on where to invest, which location, contacts and facilitate governmental contacts, acting as liaison officers, providing different cooperation modes, etc..

  • In the 4 coming years the world population will grow by 40%

  • The high density of people in areas, joined with the emissions per person in cities, makes the pollution composition completely different in otherwise similar cities.

  • The situation is different for each city and model of development used. Not the same opportunities and targets exist in the various areas of China.

  • In every study, the analysis of emissions mix is important (industry, urban use, transportation etc.).

  • Measures and rules for green cities in China exist already for more than 20 years and are recently updated.

 

Questions by ProDessus:

  • When construction (of the Park) is going to start, what is the schedule, what the cost?

  • How long would it take for procedures to finalize, for an SME to come to China? (Including the need to have a Chinese partner for an SME to come to China).

 

Replies received:

  • The budget is EUR 500 million.

  • Start: 2013, expected to be finished in 4 years realised in 3 steps (planning, construction, sell). Selling of offices and apartments is scheduled to start in 2-3 years.

  • Finish: with no unforeseen delays and if all budget is used, it will be finished in 6 years (may exceed cost by 10-20 %).

  • An SME moving to China can stand alone. There is no need to have a Chinese co-owner, other affiliations, etc..

  • Red tape for the establishment lasts around 6 months.

  • Houses can be sold in China.

  • Cost for establishing a firm in China is negotiable and low.

  • China wants to attract SMEs. The cost for 1st year could even be free of charge.

 

Link: www.euchinamayorsforum.eu/home.html

 

04-09-2012 Stakeholder seminar on Passenger Ship Safety - (Dir 2009/45/EC) - Discussion on results from written and internet public consultations on the amendment of the Directive.
(Attendance by private invitation, based on the participation to the public consultation).

  • The Costa Concordia accident has drawn a lot of attention from public, legislators etc, and EU Commission is willing to take additional measures and not let things lay as they are. The safety issue is considered very important and will be pushed for further improvements.

  • The input from people responded to the impact consultation will be announced in a report, in order to circulate ideas and topics for further improvements.

  • Study of COWI (external consultant) , presented by the team leader, started in December 2011.

  • Strong comments were made on the number of ships presented at graphs (the presented numbers of ships per country were disputed (Spain 7 Sweden) and comments were asked to be submitted in writing by e-mail).

  • Safety issues, accidents numbers, type of ships in accidents and influence on safety of their structure, info on accident analysis reports were presented by very few MS and was difficult to analyze and combine or implement with other reports and issues.

  • Spain did provide accidents reports. They asked why these studies were not provided or circulated to other MS.

  • The reply (by Chair and Consultant) stated that 'as not all MS provided reports it could take 2 years to study all aspects. For budgetary, time and other reasons, choices were made and the work continued. In any case the replies to questionnaires are only indicative so needed decisions'.

  • Internal Market issues: Some issues could not be implemented for everyone so studies were to be considered indicative.

  • Independent Consultant comment:EU Commission needs to identify the accidents rates on a rate of a passenger per day per voyage and see if these figures are high and indicative of a safety issue. If not only suppositions are made by the current data delivered.

  • As replied by Chair, 'The objectives were clear and had to follow them. This was the intention of the study'.

  • There is a lack of accidents analysis but this must not mean that there is a safety problem

  • There is no need for more bureaucracy; this would impede progress or require more measures.

It is agreed that small companies, as family companies, depend on simple legislation and there is no need not to make their lives more difficult.

  • Historical, sailing, ships of heritage, ships are are also sailing vessels but are not covered in the presentation. Nothing was said on intra-european voyages.

  • More analysis on the definitions is needed.

  • The need We need to prevent dangerous practices, to report them as passengers, ship owners, etc., will be considered in future legislation.

  • The new proposal will be out in December or latest at the beginning of next year.

 

Link: http://ec.europa.eii/transport/maritime/consultations/201207-05passengershipsafety_en.htm

 

19-06-2012 Delivering the Goods: Making Lorries Smarter, Safer and Greener

  • Various efforts and actions on amending the current freight transport specifications for more economical and less polluting delivery of goods were presented by stakeholders.

  • Presentations on technical details and advanced designs of lorries and trucks and their impacts on aerodynamics, fuel efficiency, emissions (mainly CO2), etc..

  • Problems identified with the current freight and transport lorries dimensions.

  • Presentation of eHighway trucks from Siemens: A hybrid system for freight transportation, via electrified road power-cable supply and when moving in a not electrified lane, move of the truck via hybrid engine.

 

Link: www.transportenvironment.org/events/delivering-goods-making-lorries-smarter-safer-and-greener

 

23 to 27-04-2012 Gas Week 2012 - Making a clean future real

  • An event in European Parliament, showcasing the essential role of Natural Gas(NG) in the future energy market.

  • NG emits up to 60% less CO2 compared to coal burning as used for power generation.

  • Most (70%) of the world's NG reserves are within the economic reach of EU (within a radious of 7.000 km).

  • 50-60% of EU gas suppliers are EU or EFTA States (Including Norway) and the rest reaches EU via already established routes from Russia, Africa and Middle East.

  • NG will play a major role in achieving emissions reduction by 2050 as agreed in EU.

  • More uses will appear for sectors currently using petrol and diesel.

  • Currently more than 300 000 direct jobs are provided in the EU, more are expected in the future, accompanied by a steep increase in indirect employment related to the sector.

  • NG infrastructure is expected to gain funding from EU programmes.

 

Link: www.gasnaturally.eu/facts-about-gas/the-role-of-policy-makers

 

 

27-03-2012 The Launch of Green Freight Europe (formerly known as SmartWay Europe) - The road to sustainable transport

  • Green Freight Europe is an industry-led programme driving reductions of carbon emissions from road freight in Europe.

  • It establishes a methodology for measuring and reporting carbon emissions and enables improved procurement decisions and collaboration between carriers and shippers to reduce CO2 emissions.

  • It acts as a platform for companies for sharing best practices, promotion of innovations and communication of sustainable improvements on EU road freight transport.

  • Its members include leading manufacturers, logistic service providers and road freight operators.

  • The emissions are calculated and monitored through a central database. All information, analysis and proposed solutions and measures will be validated via a certification system.

  • Efforts, initiatives and actions of the various members were presented.

 

Question by ProDessus:

  • As mentioned on the brochures of the programme, emissions measurement and decreasing proposals are the main goals. Are particulates (PT) currently included in this effort or if not is there a plan to include them?

 

Reply received:

  • PT are not included. We understand the issue, we have it in mind but the main effort is to have CO2 measurement and figures in place, as contributed by our members and form a CO2 reduction plan, that would be harmonized and include as many as possible data from various types of transport means.

  • In the future, if all goes according to our plan and no major delays are met, we could consider also studying PT and identify means to reduce them.

 

Links: www.smartway-europe.eu/SmartWay_Launch.html

www.greenfreighteurope.eu/

 

 

C o n t r i b u t i o n   t o   C o n s u l t a t i o n s

 

13 April to 5 July 201Public Consultation on Passenger Ship Safety (EU Commission-DG MOVE)

 

 

C o n t r i b u t i o n   t o   P o s i t i o n s 

 

17-04-2012 European Intermodal Association, 60/21 Arenberg 44, B-1000 Brussels

Subject: Reply toClarification request on the comment of ProDessus during the Launch of Green Freight Europe on 'what is the use of measuring CO2 (technical not possible, or legally not bound) whereas PM would make more sense’.

 

 

 

W e b i n a r s

 

12-09-2012 Covenant of Mayors

  • EU funding is important for Municipalities and main projects

  • NALAS: Network of Associations of Local Authorities of South East Europe is a good funding source.

  • For funding under Cohesion fund of EU, the responsibility lies to the MS Managing Authority as they do all the work.

  • A lot of funding goes to Renewable energy Sources (RES) and new technologies development.

  • Shift to low carbon economy to all sectors is an imperative and will act as key policy issue.

  • Loans and guarantees are available for local authorities.