TUS spearheads partnership of European Climate programme

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Th European partnership leaders at the launch of the project at TUS. Back row (l-r): Yvonne Doyle (TUS - Ireland), Liz Kennedy (TUS - Ireland), Francisco Puente (ESCAN - Spain), Liam Brown (TUS- Ireland), Seamus Hoyne (TUS - Ireland), Gregor Cerinšek ( Institute for Innovation and Development of the University of Ljubljana - Slovenia) Front row (l-r): Sandrine Benard (Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Energie Environnement - France), Vlasta Krmelj (EnerGap - Slovenia), Catherine Premat (Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Energie Environnement - France), Isabella Katsimenis (Energikontor Norr AB - Sweden), Christiane Egger (OÖ Energiesparverband - Austria), Lisa Vaughan (Tipperary Energy Agency- Ireland), Domen Bancic (Institute for Innovation and Development of the University of Ljubljana - Slovenia), Darren Barry (TUS - Ireland).

TUS (Technological University of the Shannon: Midlands Midwest) is leading a €1.7m European Climate Leadership Programme to help achieve carbon neutrality by 2050.

The project, which officially launched in Thurles, is a programme that will support leaders across seven European countries to deliver step change progress towards carbon neutrality.

The initiative was proposed by the TUS Development Unit and funded under the EU’s Horizon 2020 fund, and aims to address the goal for Europe’s economy and society to become climate neutral by 2050.

Partners from a mix of universities, government and energy agencies from the six partner countries (Austria, Croatia, France, Sweden, Slovenia and Spain) travelled to Ireland to officially kick off the project.

Dean of Flexible Learning and Work Based Learning at TUS, Seamus Hoyne said, “The issue of climate change is now to the forefront of everyone’s agenda and being discussed extensively across all sectors of society.  The ambition to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 will require strong leadership across our public and private sectors. REMARKABLE focuses on this leadership issue by profiling existing climate leaders, and developing tools to support new leaders.

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“Furthermore, it will support local and regional energy agencies to develop new services and tools to deliver on our carbon neutrality goals. With the United Nations Climate Conference – COP26 – being held in three weeks, it is very timely that we are working with other, experts from across Europe to become leaders in our own right, delivering positive change for the region.”

Senior Project Officer at TUS, Darren Barry explained, “’REMARKABLE’ is a top-down, bottom-up project that will identify leaders and provide a roadmap to help achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. Our project partnerships are integral to continuing TUS’s leading role in climate action, and it was wonderful to meet our partners from across Europe here in Thurles for the launch of this extremely important project.

“The Remarkable project is directly in line with the TUS strategy to be a leader within the Sustainable Development Goals. We are leading the way by highlighting the importance of sustainable climate action within all our activities.”

During the launch, Project Manager of the European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency, Cristina Mestre Martínez commended the team for its innovative approach to promoting leadership and learning through the joint Climate Leadership Programme, designed with and for public authorities. She stressed that the  project will support public authorities in implementing the strategic goal of carbon neutrality in all local and regional energy transition plans.

The project seeks to achieve climate neutrality, as in reaching net zero greenhouse gas emissions across all EU countries as a whole, by cutting emissions, protecting natural environments, and investing in sustainable technologies.

The projecy will run until 2024 and identify existing leaders in climate action, and through a Climate Leadership Programme (CLP), will build new leadership capacity in seven countries, inclusive of their public authorities. The project will also develop a suite of tools including consortiums and digital tools to support leaders.

The REMARKABLE CLP will also facilitate the creation of 60 roadmaps for public authorities aiming for climate neutrality by 2050. These roadmaps will allow climate leaders to translate strategic aspirations and policy ambitions into concrete and disruptive far-reaching measures, stimulating €300m investment by 2030.