The EU’s Smart Cities and Communities initiative launched by Commissioner for Energy Gunther Oettinger. The Launch-Conference brought together high-profile speakers and participants from different branches of the energy industry, including Energy Service Companies, the ICT sector representatives, know-how and examples from cities; from different disciplines of academia and from EU politics, as well as technical experts on financing instruments and EU-energy, transport and ICT politics.
The time is right for smart cities and communities: Cities and industry partners are eager to develop integrated sustainable solutions that offer clean, secure and affordable energy to citizens, reduce consumption and create new markets ‘“ in Europe and beyond. With the Smart Cities and Communities Initiative, the EU is kickstarting these new markets with an initial funding of EUR 80 million to support innovataive model projects in selected European cities.
Commissioner Oettinger explained at the launch. He added that
Cities are key to the EU’s objectives of 20% energy saving by 2020 and to developing a low carbon economy by 2050, because 70% of the EU’s energy is consumed in cities. They have a huge potential for energy saving through smarter use of resources and intelligent technology integration.
In an FP7 call to be opened on 19 July this year, teams of cities and industry partners can apply for EU-funding in the fields of integrative management of urban energy flows that also include transport, water and waste solutions.