SMEs are important engines of economic growth and employment throughout the European Union. However, they are also substantial contributors to environmental pollution. Judging by a questionnaire sent by the European Commission to the Member States, SMEs make a collective contribution of around 50% to pollution and waste in the EU. Thanks to the presence of BAT-studies, SMEs do have up-dated information on all Best Available Technologies for in-process applications and end-of-pipe treatment. Nevertheless, there still seems to be a discrepancy between the amount of technological innovation and the penetration rate of new technologies into SMEs due to financial, technical, regulatory or staff restraints.
The overall aim of PRODESTS is to stimulate technology development by European environmental SMEs and technology demonstration at SME users to increase their commitment in future related Integrated Projects within the 6th Framework Programm.
PRODESTS wants to provide new business opportunities to European SMEs in the area of environmental technologies by providing easier access to European funding in the area of technology development and demonstration.
In practice this will be achieved by
- the identification and elimination of barriers that limit the participation of SMEs within present EU research programs,
- the enhancement of SME connectivity on a European scale facilitated at a local level and
- technology and market-driven roadmapping
PRODESTS will create a network in Europe of local partners involved in environmental and clean process technology. These local partners, technology knowledge and R&D centers, will be the interface between the network and the local SMEs.
The understanding of what are the new and emerging technologies and translating these into EU funded projects will lead to economic benefits for SMEs. PRODESTS wants to deliver solutions for environmental technology users and to link environmental technologies suppliers with new market opportunities.
The outcome of the project will give concrete results about the benefits of integration of economic advantages into environmental issues considering the legal, administrative, financial and organisational aspects. The results of the study will direct SMEs to implement economically beneficial pollution prevention strategies in their company policies.
For more information, please refer to the interactive website: www.prodests.org
PRODESTS aims at the set-up of a market-oriented methodology for joining SMEs within Integrated EU Research Projects on Innovative Clean and Environmental Technologies. 27 Partners, spread over 17 European Countries, work together to join forces towards the stimulation of introduction of environmentally friendly technologies at SME scale.