Europe needs to extend its commitments to renewable energy

Europe’s energy future stands at a cross-roads. As a continent we have made huge progress towards a renewable energy path – with European Union countries legally obliged to meet renewable energy targets by 2020 amounting to 20% of the total energy share across the Union. But we now need to extend our political commitments, making them last way into the future – and reap the economic as well as environmental benefits. Without such commitments we risk becoming increasingly reliant on expensive, volatile and polluting fossil fuels.

As Europe’s biggest renewable energy source – currently meeting over 6% of the EU electricity demand – and as a mature technology that can be quickly rolled-out, wind power is ready to take on the twin spectre of climate change and energy security, creating thousands of jobs and boosting Europe’s competitiveness by keeping our technological lead in wind power in the process.

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Cleantech Innovation in Stockholm

There are many great reasons to invest in the Stockholm region. Stockholm is innovative and globally connected, and has a supportive and stable business environment. Stockholm has received several honoring awards, and among the most recent one is the award for Region of the future in Europe 2012/2013, by fDi Magazine. In addition to this, Stockholm is home to one of Europe’s most advanced and innovative cleantech clusters.

Why invest in the Stockholm region?
Investing in the Stockholm region means gaining unique advantages. A few examples of Stockholm’s competitiveness within cleantech are

  • Stockholm having the largest number of innovative cleantech companies in Scandinavia.
  • Stockholm being the leader in technology development for biogas, ocean power and smart grids.
  • Stockholm having large public procurements and growing demand for new fuels.
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Q&A with ORCO

Berlin is experiencing a rebirth similar to the one London went through in the late 1990s. It’s becoming a place where people want to live, tourists want to visit, and where commerce wants to do business. With occupancy rates at their peak, Sebastian Blecke, COO of ORCO, GSG Berlin’s biggest office and commercial space provider explains where it all went right…

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Midscand – Europe’s coolest place for Investment

Sweden’s knowledge based economy is no big secret, but parts of this fantastic region of the world have been overlooked for too long. But not anymore – some of the biggest names in social networking have wised up to the region. We hit the ‘like’ button for Sweden’s Jamtland county.

Sweden is widely regarded as one of Europe’s most dynamic economies. Stockholm with its strong banking sector is clearly the focus of the region’s attention where there are plenty of opportunities for investors outside the capital city.

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In the Loop

Rainer Nitsche
Rainer Nitsche

The year 2011 was without a doubt one of the most successful years in the development of Magdeburg as a business location.

Interview with Rainer Nitsche, Vice-mayor and head of department for business development, tourism and regional co-operation of the State Capital Magdeburg

Germany’s economy is still Europe’s most powerful, but away from the headlines and commentary, what is the mood on the frontline of inward investment in places like Magdeburg? Is it optimistic?

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Blown out of proportion – Germany’s wind energy reaches gale force

Emden in Lower Saxony is the third largest North Sea port and Germany’s western-most seaport. Volkswagen operates a large plant here with a workforce of 10,000 – consequently, cars are the principle cargo with nearly 1m marques being exported from Emden annually. The city is no stranger to commerce and economics.

However, it’s the clean energy industry that’s really piquing investor interest and giving Emden a whole new dimension. From here and up the coast is one of the world’s largest concentrations of wind farms. Needless to say, Germany’s long mechanical and electronic engineering tradition is the backbone underpinning Emden’s current strong position. This region is the unequivocal vanguard of technological development.

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Going Dutch – Eindhoven’s lesson to us all

During the mid 1990s, Eindhoven found itself at a crossroads. The two main industries behind the city’s prosperity suddenly diverged. The truck giant DAF imploded and leading electronics manufacturer Philips threw itself headlong into the global economy. What started as a small light bulb factory staffed by local workers was now sourcing its workforce far away from its traditional base.

It was a familiar story across the manufacturing centres of Western Europe. Functional obsolescence, end of an economic cycle, macroeconomic fallout – call it what you will – Eindhoven was looking at travelling the same underemployed route to as Detroit. However, the city avoided most the of post-industrialisation challenges to emerge as one of Europe’s major technology and industrials hub.

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The innovative and economic power of Brainport Eindhoven Region

“The innovative character of our region is supported by the facts. Businesses based in Brainport Eindhoven are awarded four patents per day; this is more than half (55%) of the total number of patents registered throughout the country. Nowhere else in the Netherlands you will see as much private investment in R&D as in this region. The export figures for businesses in the province of Noord-Brabant exceed 57 billion Euros. This is 23% of the total Dutch export figure and way above the figure for the Rotterdam region with its Seaport, and the Amsterdam region with Mainport Schiphol.

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