NEES Natural Energy Efficiency and Sustainability, 57
The NEES Project is founded on the idea that the Northern Periphery Programme area has the tradition, skills, resources and demand required to take a lead in the area of products and services for natural energy efficiency and sustainability, and to consolidate this lead as an economic, social and environmental asset for the benefit of the region. ... More...
The NEES Project is founded on the idea that the Northern Periphery Programme area has the tradition, skills, resources and demand required to take a lead in the area of products and services for natural energy efficiency and sustainability, and to consolidate this lead as an economic, social and environmental asset for the benefit of the region. The Project seeks to promote enterprises and markets in this area, and to help rural communities to develop new sources of livelihood, improve the environment and enhance the quality of life in the region, making a distinctive contribution to the rest of Europe.
Enhancing energy efficiency and sustainability of buildings, especially domestic buildings, is a principal challenge to the Programme area, and to the whole of Europe. Energy retrofit of existing buildings is a difficult and expensive operation and the products and technologies available are usually imported, produced by high-technology, energy-intensive manufacturing processes (such as plastics, metals and concrete) and containing hazardous and polluting chemicals (such as PVC’s, flame retardants and cadmium). However, there are available alternative products and technologies that are based on nature. These include the use of non-food crops (such as timber, straw and hemp), of organic processes (such as bacterial decomposition and composting) and of natural resources (such as sun, wind and water flows). All of these are abundant the region, and may be tapped through low-impact technologies and transferable skills. They may be provided by local enterprises and tradesmen, produced without major infrastructure, precluding the need for large capital investments or energy-intensive, polluting manufacturing processes.
The NEES Project aims to identify and benchmark best practises in this area, mainly those already occurring within the Programme area, in order facilitate knowledge exchange, innovative development and transfer of these skills, and create clusters for joint marketing between the different regions. In this way, the Project will promote the regional the “green economy” and encourage sustainable diversification, skills transfer and updating, the preservation of rural and construction jobs, and development of new markets for these products and services.
The NEES Project will also facilitate exchange and co-operation between providers of products and services, and professional research centres and academic institutions. It will boost innovation through product and service transfer, updating and clustering. It will promote growth in the sector through networking between producers, researchers, trainers and end-users. It will facilitate the integration of this knowledge into the curriculum of regional academic bodies. It will encourage the development of more local authority and development agency policies for support of this sector. It will widely disseminate the potential of the sector at a local and European level.