Invest in the clean energy future we want: ten recommendations to accelerate competitive clean energy innovation with Horizon Europe

Doubt is spreading over Europe’s capacity to build a better future for all. Many parents fear their children will be worse off than they are. Four months ahead of the European elections, the European Union (EU) has a chance to challenge this mind-set by setting a new horizon for its Research and Innovation (R&I) policy.

The European Commission, Council and Parliament are indeed negotiating ‘Horizon Europe’, the next EU Framework Programme for R&I. This comes at a time when Europe is engaged in the energy transition: a radical change of the way we heat, power and transport ourselves, to ensure better lives on a clean planet.

The EU and European States ended the year 2018 with the EU Long Term Strategy and the international climate negotiations at COP24. They made the right promises; they now need to walk the talk. Horizon Europe is key in that regard, because there will be no energy transition without transformative innovation.

This policy brief aims to inform the negotiations and implementation of Horizon Europe, to help the European Union invest in the clean energy future we want. It thus makes ten recommendations to 1) strengthen EU R&I Missions, 2) focus the European Innovation Council on providing patient capital to innovators, and 3) invest sufficient public funding into these promising innovations.