R&D in the energy industry
Research and development activities play an important role in the implementation of the carbone neutral vision of energy industry. New innovations are needed to make it possible to carry out the investment plans of the coming years in a cost efficient and environmentally friendly way.
In 2007, the European Commission published its strategic energy technology plan (SET-plan) that aims to accelerate the launch of low-carbon technologies on the market. According to the European Commission’s estimate from 2009, the implementation of the SET-plan targets requires R&D&I funding of EUR 8 billion per year until 2020.
In order to raise the required amount of money for the implementation of European targets, it is necessary to increase financial support for product development and demonstrations in the energy sector on national and EU-level. According to data by IEA, the level of public funding for the development of energy technologies is at a lower level than in 1980 although the social importance of the sector has increased considerably.
In EU a significant investment to R&D is the Horizon 2020 framework programme that has an estimated budget of EUR 70 billion for the years 2014-2020. About 10% of the budget is allocated for energy industry research. It is also possible to get funding to demonstration projects. Instructions for the application process are available from, e.g. Tekes' participant’s guide.
Finnish Energy provides funding for R&D through the environmental and electricity research pools and in the district heating sector. Further information about these is available from the menu on the left-hand side of the page.