Austro-Slovenian border region benefits from reduced carbon dioxide emissions

A cross-border project between Austria and Slovenia has been targeting energy efficiency, alternative energy sources and energy sustainability.

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The MOVE project demonstration campus in Ptuj, Slovenia The MOVE project demonstration campus in Ptuj, Slovenia

The main aim of the MOVE cross-border cooperation project, which operated from 2009 to 2012, was to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by implementing a package of measures to use energy efficiently, promote the development and use of alternative energy sources and improve energy sustainability.

The project involved Slovenian and Austrian partner organisations collaborating on the development of a regional renewable energy model.  This involved examining the availability and potential capacity for renewable energy generation and energy efficiency projects in the border regions of both countries.  As a result, an action plan was drawn up for use by local authorities planning to develop energy projects.

The MOVE project also involved the development of training courses in the renewable energy generation and energy efficiency sectors.  A total of three four-day seminars were organised, focussed on providing architects and planners with information on energy certification in new buildings and the renovation of old properties.  In total, 32 seminars, workshops and conferences attended by 1 446 participants were organised over the course of the 42-month project.

The energy efficiency of 280 public buildings was tested during the project and benchmarks were used to select the 35 most inefficient buildings, where were then subjected to a thorough environmental and energy use audit.  As a result, plans to thermally insulate eight buildings in Slovenia were drawn up.

In collaboration with local authorities and industry representatives, 28 locations in the Austro-Slovenian border region were identified as being suitable for solar energy photovoltaic system and business plans for photovoltaic systems on those sites were prepared.

The project also saw the construction of a demonstration centre with the trial operation of two energy-self-sufficient street lamps, which are powered by both solar and wind energy.  Two further demonstration centres provided information on solar energy.  The purpose of the demonstration centres is to show the general public how renewable energies can be integrated into daily life through the use of technologies which offer promising alternatives.

Project manager Saša Erlih said that the project, one of Slovenia’s largest cross-border projects, had successfully achieved its targets.  Mr Erlih said he was particularly pleased that the many young people, professionals and educational institutions as well as the public and private sectors had become involved in the project.  The wide dissemination of information to the general public through the holding of events and the publication of information had been particularly worthwhile.

Total investment and EU funding

Total investment for the “MOVE towards Energy Sustainability” project was EUR 2 977 855, of which the EU’s European Regional Development Fund contributed EUR 2 506 185 from the Cross-border Co-operation Programme Austria-Slovenia 2007-2013. EUR 491 671 was provided from national public funds and contributions by project partners.

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