The first day of the DecarbHeat Forum taking place in Brussels on 11-12 May gathered more than 220 participants including the major players of the heating and cooling industry from all around Europe and relevant policy-makers at European, national, regional and local level.
Martin Forsén, President of the European Heat Pump Association (EHPA), said:
“We would like policy-makers to see the determination of the industry to decarbonize the heating and cooling sector. The heat pump industry is growing today but we need policies to speed-up and deepen the process. Heating and cooling needs to become the new political priority.”
In the ambitious post-Paris COP21 world, the Decarb Heat Forum stands out as the first gathering of cross-sectoral companies, associations and institutions that believe in bridging the gap and connecting the heating/cooling and electricity sectors in the move towards zero CO2 emissions by 2050.
“The modernisation and integration of renewable energies must go hand in hand. Heating and cooling must be at the center of our attention. For this, communication is key.” said Dominique Ristori, Director General for Energy at the European Commission.
The first day of the conference was focused on the policies towards the decarbonisation of cities and industry and included the DecarbHeat Ceremony in which the representatives of the industry and other major stakeholders had the opportunity to formally sign both the Industry Pledge and the Declaration of Support. By signing it, they show their willingness to make the vision of a 100% decarbonised European heating and cooling system reality.
His Royal Highness the Prince Laurent of Belgium supports the initiative and attended the ceremony which was followed by the Heat Pump City of the Year Awards, presented by Céline Frémault, Minister of Energy and Environment for the Brussels Capital Region. The city of Vienna won the prize with their strategy of deployment of heat pumps in new buildings in the competition amongst the rest of the finalists, the city of Berlin (that won the award of Best Refubirshment Project) and the city of Trondheim, Norway (that won award of Best Visualisation of heat pumps).
“A healthy and sustainable future is also the wish of the vast majority of European citizens. So as a representative of the people, I feel it to be my duty to give my full personal support to the DecarbHeat vision and to your initiative.”, said Frémault.
The forum included insights from respected institutions, such as the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), global corporate leaders like Harry Verhaar (Philips), thought leaders from policy -like Claude Turmes, member of the European Parliament-, and science, like the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy.
Name: Eirini Litina
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