The NER300 program, founded by the European Commission, is one of the world’s largest initiatives for funding low-carbon innovation projects like renewable energy development or carbon capture and storage. During the operation of this program there has been 38 supported projects from more than 2 billion Euros. The European Union announced that they are willing to maintain this mechanism for the next programming period from 2021 to 2030 on the name “NER400”. According to the early estimations the available amount of funds is going to cover more than 9 billion EUR for the member states. The trend for smart metering systems throughout Europe is well-known among the countries. Still, considering the foreseeable EU regulations regarding the dissemination of these devices. The present study provides with a review of the European best practices for setting smart metering systems and studies the recent Hungarian endeavors for running pilot projects in this field.
Natural gas is still the primary input of the Hungarian heating and cooling systems, therefore it still makes most of the overheads. One of the main obstacles of a competitive district heating system is the public opinion which still considers this service more expensive than the traditional heating forms. According to the absolute numbers this assumption might be valid but from a more accurate economic perspective, heat production has more aspects to stress. Most people forget about the simple fact that the maintenance costs of natural gas based systems are rather outsourced to the consumer than in the case of district heating. Furthermore, the uneven rate of the fixed and variable costs of this technology does not prove to be optimal for service developments. Investigating the future tendencies highlight that encouraging the efficiency improvement of district heating and the spread of technological innovation in the sector does not belong to the top priorities. Still, avoiding this problem it could lead serious deadweight losses in the case of the heating sector.
In recent years, there was an increase in economic concepts which defined various concepts for the European Union to leave the economic depression behind. The idea of circular economy boomed into the sight of European Union policy makers in the beginning of 2015. The notion introduced a holistic system planning approach for EU development initiatives. This paper introduces the essential background for the interpretation of circular economy and presents the main priorities throughout its implementation. The size of the European Community leaves many opportunities for the reconsideration of circular processes. The study focuses on circular applications in Hungary which substantially differ from the Western-European practice. The different wage and development levels of the member states in some cases might appear as a possibility to extend product life cycles which otherwise would end sooner. The analysis aims to find the reasons for the variant operations and examines how the extended spatial perspective from national levels to the EU level influences the transition to circular economy.