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What is GREBE?
‘Generating Renewable Energy Business Enterprise’ (GREBE) is a project to support renewable energy energy enterprises over the 3-year period, 2015 – 2018. It is a transnational project operating across the West of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Finland, Norway and Iceland, and will be led by the Western Development Commission (WDC).
The project, which has a budget of €1.77m and is co-funded by the EU’s Northern Periphery & Arctic (NPA) Programme, will focus on the challenges of peripheral and arctic regions as places for doing business, and help develop renewable energy (RE) business opportunities provided by extreme conditions.
Why is GREBE happening?
Renewable Energy entrepreneurs working in the NPA area face challenges including a lack of critical mass, dispersed settlements, poor accessibility, vulnerability to climate change effects and limited networking opportunities are well recognised because of their peripheral location. GREBE will equip SMEs and start-up businesses with the skills and confidence to overcome these challenges and use place-based natural assets for renewable energy to best sustainable effect. The renewable energy sector contributes to sustainable regional and rural development and has potential for future growth.
Who will GREBE support?
GREBE will target and support start-up and small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and recent graduates working in the renewable energy sector and based in one of the six participating partner regions of the project. GREBE products and services will also be useful for existing organisations involved in renewable energy, local and regional authorities, business advisory organisations, as well as research and development institutes, technology groups, and universities and other educational institutes with an interest in rural economic development and/or renewable energy.
What will GREBE do?
GREBE will support renewable energy start-ups and SMEs:
- To grow their business, to provide local jobs, and meet energy demands of local communities.
- By supporting diversification of the technological capacity of SMEs and start-ups so that they can exploit the natural conditions of their locations.
- By providing RE tailored, expert guidance and mentoring will be provided to ensure SMEs and start-ups have the knowledge and expertise to grow and expand their businesses.
- By providing a platform for transnational sharing of knowledge to demonstrate the full potential of the RE sector by showcasing innovations on RE technology and strengthening accessibility to expertise and business support available locally and in other NPA regions.
- To connect with other renewable energy businesses to develop new opportunities locally, regionally and transnationally through the Virtual Energy Ideas Hub.
- By conducting research on the processes operating in the sector to improve understanding of the sector’s needs and make the case for public policy to support the sector.
How can GREBE be accessed?
Anyone working in the renewable energy sector can participate in:
- Entrepreneur Enabler Scheme (mentoring scheme for startups and small businesses).
- Online training & networking platform where they can access project reports and guidelines.
- Virtual Energy Ideas Hub where they can share experiences and seek advice from other organisations in the renewable energy sector.
Other GREBE information will be available through the project website, which is currently under development, and from any of the project partners.
Where is GREBE happening and who is running it?
GREBE will be operated by eight partner organisations across six regions:
- Western Development Commission (Ireland)
- Action Renewables (Northern Ireland)
- Fermanagh and Omagh District Council (Northern Ireland)
- North Highland College (Scotland)
- Natural Resources Institute (Finland)
- Karelia University of Applied Sciences (Finland)
- Narvik Science Park (Norway)
- Innovation Center Iceland (Iceland)
GREBEs project activities have already begun with our first partner meeting in November. For updates on future opportunities, please contact Pauline Leonard (firstname.lastname@example.org), or via our social media links below:
Follow our Blog: https://greberenewableenergyblog.wordpress.com/
Like us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/GREBEProject/
Follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/GREBE_NPA