The role of cleaner technologies in the 4th Framework Programme of the EU is of major importance for research and technological development. On behalf of the Austrian Ministry of Environment, Youth and Family Affairs the research project analyses the cleaner technology projects concerning the manufacturing sector. The analysis encompasses the programme „Environment and Climate" and "Industrial and Materials Technologies". The aim of the study was, on the one hand, to develop proposals for possible improvements of future programmes and, on the other, to obtain insights into Austria`s contribution and position in the programmes examined.
The following findings evolved: Surprisingly most of the cleaner technology projects were submitted to the programme "Industrial and Materials Technology" and not to "Environment and Climate". In the programme "Environment and Climate" most of the proposals concern end-of-pipe and clean up technologies and not cleaner technologies. To foster future stimulation of cleaner technologies the following recommendations were made:
- (1) the quality of submitted proposals has to be increased
- (2) cleaner technologies must be given greater emphasis in future invitations
- (3) a more precise formulation of the invitation seems to be useful (based on the categories of cleaner technologies)
- (4) the development of new process technologies has to be stressed explicitly and
- (5) goals concerning environmentally sound product development (so-called eco-design) have to be added.
Austria`s position can be summarised thus (1) in spite of a higher rate of approval the quality of the submitted proposals has to be improved; (2) measures to increase Austria's contribution to the development of cleaner technologies are necessary; (3) Austria's contribution to the overall scope of the examined part of the programme also needs to be stimulated.