The World Sustainable Energy Days – organised by O.Ö. Energiesparverband – is one of Europe’s largest renewable energy events, combining six conferences, site-visits, B2B meetings and the Energiesparmesse tradeshow. Its conferences present the latest technologies and trends in renewable energy and energy efficiency for buildings, industry and transport.
The annual event has been held in Upper Austria since 1992 and regularly attracts over 900 participants from more than 60 countries, providing opportunity for establishing new European and Global partnerships. The 2015 WSED included conferences on Pellets, Nearly Zero Energy Buildings, Energy Efficiency, Energy Efficiency in Commercial Buildings and Smart Windows.
European Pellet Conference
The European Pellet Conference presented the latest technology and market trends, as well as developments and updates on policy, standardisation and research. The first session, ‘Changing market structure for pellets’, explored recent policy developments and the development of global markets. Europe remains far in the lead in terms of market share, with Germany, Sweden and Austria as the leading producer countries. African, Central Asian and South American markets are expected to make greater use of biomass, as a contribution to resilience in the face of climate change, demographic change and to diversify energy sources.
The afternoon sessions presented successful marketing and branding of pellets and stoves, as well as the highly successful ENPlus standardisation system. The following technological forum presented the states-of-the-art in torrefaction, pellet storage and safety guidelines, and the challenges of international pellet trade. The following day presented two parallel sessions, one on worldwide markets – giving an overview of the UK, Austria, Germany, Russia, China, Sweden and the Baltic States – and the other on new technology – presenting the results of new research and innovation projects.
European Nearly Zero Energy Buildings Conference
A “nearly zero energy building” (nZEB) is a building with very high energy performance and low energy consumption, which is equipped to cover its energy needs from renewable resources. The EU’s Energy Performance of Building’s Directive has set a target for all new buildings to be nearly zero-energy by 2020, and Member States must draw up national plans for increasing the number of such buildings. This includes not both new constructions and renovation of existing buildings.
The Conference started with a session on policy and markets, with the Commission presenting an update on European policies. Whilst nZEBs are emerging in Europe, generally as demonstration projects, solutions are not yet scalable and mainstreamed. Successful policies from across the EU for encouraging building refurbishment, were presented, as well as nZEB demonstration projects.
The next World Sustainable Energy Days will be held on 24-26 February 2016. The Call for Papers and Speakers is now open, and will close on 9 October 2015.
The conference is organised by Greenovate! Europe member, O.Ö. Energiesparverband, the energy agency of Upper Austria, which is one of the European Union’s leading renewable energy regions.