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Promotion of Short Rotation Coppice for District Heating Systems in Eastern Europe (BIO-HEAT)

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Alternative energy sources to fossil fuels are urgently required, and bioenergy is considered one of the best candidates. Concretely, Short Rotation Coppice (plantations of fast growing trees), are an ideal source flexible enough to be applied to a wide range of services with no availability problems. As heating systems are the most energy consuming in Eastern European countries, the use of biomass as combustible would mean an important reduction in the emissions of these countries. However, biomass-based renewable energy sources potential is not being used as much as desirable; the lack of know-how about its potential, among other important barriers, is hindering its use. Thus, BIO-HEAT aims to promote the use of Short Rotation Coppice (SRCs) as a source of energy for District Heating (DH) in Eastern European countries (Czech Republic, Romania, Poland, Slovakia and Lithuania) in order to set up new regional SRC to DH chains. Results and success stories transfer has been realized through training activities and the development of a comprehensive dissemination and promotion strategy focused on the target countries.


  • 989 stakeholders (farmers and landowners, district heating (DH) professionals and municipal energy suppliers) participated in the 11 workshops (2 per country except for Poland where 3 were organized) and 339 (relevant authorities and decision makers) in the 10 seminars (2 per country) organized during the project. Specific training structures were developed for each of the target countries.
  • More than 50,000 people reached by the dissemination activities. This was achieved through publications in newsletters, journals and magazines, presentations in conferences/meetings, radio and TV interviews, link to the project on the partners’ websites.
  • Energy clusters to establish close collaboration between the biomass suppliers (SRCs) and the energy (DH) producers have been set up in all the participating countries: one in Czech Republic (5 members), one in Lithuania (5 associations as members), one in Poland (7 members), three in Romania (7, 9 and 8 members) and one in Slovakia (7 members).

Lessons learned

  • The list of participants joining the workshops and seminars in the five target countries demonstrate that the consortium implemented an effective strategy for informing key stakeholders about these training events, thereby attracting many key actors to take part in the national clusters. The BIO-HEAT project website will be updated with new relevant information related to the clusters activities and agreements, etc.
  • At the beginning there was a lack of cooperation from the stakeholders (e.g. farmers and other SRCs to DH chain representatives) due to the partly negative initial opinion on biomass use. Nevertheless, once some initial barriers were removed, the cooperation and enthusiasm of stakeholders has been very good. The result is proven by the clusters establishment and the plan for further activities of their members.
  • It was intended to create a common structure and schedule for the workshops, seminars and clusters in all participating countries, but the singularities of each country made necessary to organise them differently according to their characteristics. The project activities must be specific to the target groups and to the different countries.

Partners and coordinator

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Contact point: 
Ms. Pilar Zapata Aranda
+34 951 047 290


Key documents

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In brief

01/09/2010 to 31/08/2012
Contract number: 

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