Project title

Building a Green Energy and Logistics Belt

Project background

A large amount of biomass is available along the Danube with the potential to improve energy security and foster sustainable energy production. Despite the fact that National Renewable Energy Action Plans set bioenergy targets for 2020, it is expected that Danube countries on the Middle and Lower Danube will contribute only marginally to the bioenergy production in Europe. In order to counteract and exploit synergies in the whole Danube region, fostering know-how transfer and cooperation among key actors in the bioenergy field is essential.

Currently, biomass is mainly processed locally due to a lack of secure, efficient and environmentally-friendly logistic solutions. ENERGY BARGE for the first time will build on synergies between the bioenergy industry and the Danube logistics sector. For this purpose ENERGY BARGE will analyse requirements regarding transport, handling and storage of the biomass feedstock, identify promising biomass products for inland waterway transports, initiate concrete transports via Danube through B2B events and implement pilot actions in selected Danube ports.

ENERGY BARGE main objectives

The overall objective of ENERGY BARGE was to foster sustainable usage of biomass for energy production in the Danube Region and to increase the share of environmentally friendly biomass-transport on the Danube. It builded on national initiatives existing on the Upper Danube and transfers know-how and experience along the whole Danube corridor.

Furthermore ENERGY BARGE

  • intensified the transnational cooperation among key actors in biomass supply chains including stakeholders from the agricultural sector, the biomass industry and logistics service providers
  • fostered the energy security and energy efficiency of the Danube region by supporting the development of joint regional storage and distribution solutions and strategies for increasing bioenergy usage
  • supported the development of a better connected, interoperable and environmentally-friendly inland waterway transport system for the supply of bio-based feedstock, secondary and intermediary products
  • positioned Danube ports as hubs for the processing and handling of biomass products and strengthen their capability to connect with stakeholders along the bioenergy value chains
  • provided practical guidance for potential users of Danube logistics services from the bioenergy industry in order to build up secure transportation and distribution networks 

Lead partner

  • FNR - Agency for Renewable Resources

Project partner

  • BCG – BioCampus Straubing GmbH
  • DIT – Deggendorf Institute of Technology
  • VIA – via donau - Austrian Waterway Company
  • PoVi – Port of Vienna
  • BE2020 – Bioenergy 2020+ GmbH
  • ICARST – International Centre for Applied Research and Sustainable Technology
  • SPaP – Slovak Shipping and Ports JSC
  • NARIC – National Agricultural Research and Innovation Centre
  • MAHART – MAHART-Freeport Co. Ltd
  • SDEWES Centre – International Centre for Sustainable Development of Energy, Water and Environment Systems
  • PoVu – Public Institution Port Authority Vukovar
  • TCS – Technology Center Sofia Ltd.
  • ARBIO – Romanian Association of Biomass and Biogas
  • Nostra Silva – Federation of owners of forests and grasslands in Romania

Associated strategic partner

  • CEI – Central European Initiative – Executive Secretariat
  • NFM – Ministry of Development Hungary
  • RNB – Government of Lower Bavaria, Department Economy, Regional Development and Transport
  • MMATI – Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure
  • ADRM – Association of Danube River Municipalities “Danube”
  • ISSAPP – Institute of soil science, agrotechnologies and plant protection „N.Poushkarov”
  • GFTCluster – Green Freight Transport Cluster
  • ARGE Donau – Working Community of the Danube Regions, Working Group Transport and Navigation

Duration and budget

Project duration: 30 months (January 2017 – June 2019)
The project was successfully concluded.

Budget: EUR 2,323,519.65
ERDF: EUR 1,974,991.67 (Funding rate: 85%)

Funding programme: Danube Transnational Programme (DTP) 
Priority Area: PA 3 - Better connected and energy responsible Danube region
Specific Objective: SO 3.2 Improve energy security and energy efficiency    

Project activities

  • On 13th June 2017 the EU Strategy for Danube Region National Coordinators conferred the “EUSDR Strategic Project” status to nine projects and ENERGY BARGE is one of them. This label identifies projects with high macro-regional impact, benefitting the Danube Region and its EU Strategy. 
  • The bioenergy companies along the Danube corridor were identified and located.
  • The logistics requirements and needs of companies from the bioenergy sector (potential users of Danube logistics) were assessed.
  • Launch of the modal shift platform which is provided free of charge and combines knowledge and useful information about the biomass sector with information and details about the Danube logistics sector. In this way, environmentally friendly transport solutions are initiated and synergies between both sectors strengthened.
  • An informative handbook on the planning of biomass transports on the Danube was published (transport, handling, storage): Link to brochure
  • Together with international partners five B2B events for the use of synergies between the biomass/bioenergy sector and the Danube logistics sector in the Danube region were organised (AT, SK, HU, DE, HR):
  1. The Danube Business Talks (10/11 October 2018) with rd. 200 participants in Vienna:
  2. Danube logistics meets bioeconomy (22 November 2018) with more than 30 participants in Bratislava
  3. DanuBeGreen (30 January 2019) with more than 170 participants in Budapest
  4. Green bioenergy logistics (5 February 2019)
  5. Danube logistics meets growing markets (30 March 2019) with rd. 60 participants in Straubing

The project was successfully concluded in 2019.

Additional information can be found on the project webpage:

The project made a substantial contribution to the implementation of measure 12. Expand multimodal handling possibilities along the Danube of the Action Programme for the Danube 2022.