The European Union has joined Mission Innovation, a global initiative on clean energy, at its inaugural ministerial meeting in San Francisco on 1-2 June. This initiative was launched at the United Nations Climate Change Conference 2015 (COP21) in Paris with the aim of reinvigorating and accelerating public and private global clean energy innovation.
In joining Mission Innovation, 20 of the world’s major economies, representing 58% of the world population and over 80% of global clean energy research budgets, have pledged to double their government investment in clean energy research and innovation over the next five years. The European Commission has now joined this initiative on behalf of the EU, which funds clean energy under the EU research and innovation programme Horizon 2020.
Maroš Šefcovic, Vice-President responsible for the Energy Union, said: “The European Commission is honoured to be part of Mission Innovation. Scaling up clean energy innovation is key to the success of the European Energy Union and to the implementation of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. It also represents a major global economic and industrial opportunity. Mission Innovation therefore coheres perfectly with our upcoming research, innovation and competitiveness strategy.”
Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, added: “I have set three goals for the EU research and innovation policy – Open Innovation, Open Science, and Open to the World – and Mission Innovation combines all three. Open innovation by bringing a variety of actors together, open science by promoting synergies and the sharing of research results, and openness to the world by being a prime example of a truly global collaboration. I am confident that Mission Innovation is well geared to accelerate the clean energy revolution.”
Around €10 billion funding is expected to be allocated to clean energy under Horizon 2020 for the period 2014-2020. Under Horizon 2020, the European Union is set to progressively increase its clean energy research budget each year from 2015 to 2020. Ultimately, the annual budget will have grown from a little under €1 billion per year in 2015 to almost €2 billion per year in 2020, with the average annual budget for the period 2013-2015 as a baseline.