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In today's Morning Brief:

Energy system integration

According to Euractiv, consumers will be at the centre of EU efforts to create a more integrated energy system, with local authorities playing an essential role to bring energy users closer to suppliers in a bid to maximise efficiency and cut greenhouse gas emissions, officials say.

 

Forest biomass compliance with sustainability

The European Commission is seeking feedback on the draft rules regarding forest bioenergy, to demonstrate how forest biomass complies with the sustainability criteria of the Renewable Energy Directive. The text lays out auditing rules, and rules on how to prove compliance with harvesting criteria at national, sub-national level or at the forest sourcing area level, and the compliance with land use, land use change and forestry criteria. The feedback period ends on April 28th.

 

World Health Day: EU funding to tackle Covid-19

For the second year, the World Health Day occurs as most of Europe is under a strict lockdown to avoid the spread of Covid-19. The EU has provided an important stimulus to the research and innovation for the fight of infectious diseases, investing €4.1 billion from 2007 to 2019 through its previous Framework Programmes,  with further commitments in 2020 in addition to the €1 billion pledge for coronavirus research. Within Horizon Europe, Innovative Medicine Initiatives has supported several projects for the diagnostics and therapy of Covid-19, the EIC Accelerator Pilot has supported companies tackling the Coronavirus directly or indirectly, through the Covid-19 Seal of Excellence. EU is also currently funding the vaccine implementation of BioNTech, CureVac, and numerous other vaccine-related new projects. Here is an overview.

 

Biden unveils historic $325B research and innovation plan

For those that did not have the chance to catch this piece of news late last week, this is worth noting and falls square into the R&I budget discussion we have been covering for a long time now: under the proposal, the US would invest $35 billion to boost clean technologies, with some of this money used to launch the new Advanced Research Projects Agency-Climate out of the Department of Energy; invest $50 billion in semiconductor manufacturing and research; spend $40 billion to upgrade ageing lab facilities; give a huge, $50 billion top-up to the National Science Foundation; and devote $174 billion to overhaul the American electric car market. Science Business forgot, however, to mention that the €95.5bn Horizon Europe budget represents 5% of research and innovation spending across Europe. That puts the total spending in R&I at EU level at €1,9 trillion. We know, of course, that these numbers do not adequately reflect reality in the EU: the methodology for calculating private and public investment in research and innovation is heavily skewed by inflated numbers and too-broad-to-mean-anything definitions of what should be accounted for, especially in what concerns the private investment dimension. In any case, the key takeaway is that a federal budget, certainly has the potential to boost existing capacities in an articulated, trans-regional manner and create truly innovative results.

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31/05/2022: BioData.PT Session 3, EU AI Law, European Sustainable Energy Week, LIFE Awards 2022 Winners, EU Green Deal, and more.

In today’s Morning Brief:
– BioData.PT Talks Session 3: Recent Artificial Intelligence Tools and Architectures for Structural Biology;
– EUA Policy Input: Considerations for a “European Degree”;
– Putting Science into Standards;
– The EU AI law will not be future-proof unless it regulates general purpose AI systems;
– European Sustainable Energy Week: Going green and digital for Europe’s energy transition;
– European Commission reveals winners of LIFE Awards 2022;
– Interact with statistics for the European Green Deal;
– EU countries urged to prepare for Russian gas cut: Summit draft.

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30/05/2022: INESC TEC Workshop, EU Cancer Plan, Eurostat, Defunct Satellites, Hydrogen, and more.

In today’s Morning Brief:
– INESC TEC coordinated a workshop on Machine Learning;
– Access to financial products for persons with a history of cancer in EU Member States;
– Eurostat regional yearbook: From traditional printed publication to modern interactive tool;
– ‘World-first’ project for capturing defunct satellites ramps up;
– Hydrogen: BAM sets up digitally networked research filling station to increase safety of technology;
– EFCA coordinates EU efforts to monitor the bluefin tuna fishing season;
– Zero Pollution Monitoring and Outlook Workshop – Report;
– Commission outlines defence R&D priorities in new €924M work programme.

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26/05/2022: INESC-ID research grants, new MSCA platform, Horizon Europe UK backup, REPowerEU, Fit for 55, and more.

In today’s Morning Brief:
– INESC-ID: Nuno Lopes receives research grants from Google and Woven Alpha;
– EU ramping up efforts for strategic autonomy in raw materials;
– Laurence Moreau appointed head of the ERC executive agency;
– Event: The UK’s Position in Global Science and Innovation;
– New MSCA networking platform for future applicants;
– Application system opens for UK Horizon backup grants;
– Fraunhofer elects three new executive vice-presidents;
– FaST Navigator study identifies models necessary to provide accurate advice on the use of fertilisers to EU farmers;
– Germany’s pacifist universities pose obstacle to militarisation of EU R&D;
– Webinar: The European Standardisation Booster;
– MSCA Cluster event on Mission Ocean and Waters;
– REPowerEU: Commission establishes the EU Energy Platform Task Force to secure alternative supplies;
– Horizon Europe mission on carbon-neutral cities kicks into gear;
– Fit for 55: New EU carbon sink goal will increase 2030 reduction target;
– A new Blue Economy Observatory to monitor and promote the sustainability of our ocean related activities;
– Zero Pollution Monitoring and Outlook Workshop – Report.

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