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2020, a year to remember
October - November 2020
Low Carbon

We are approaching the end of 2020: it has been a peculiar year and one to remember in many ways! Still the Alpine stakeholders are keeping up the good work and some major Alpine events are to come before the holidays season. The AlpWeek Intermezzo, the EUSALP Annual Forum and the Alpine Conference are all taking place between 9-11 December, as virtual events.


To conclude the year, this newsletter edition features once again four of our projects, proudly presenting their results and impact on the Alpine region. You can find out more about the achievements of these projects in our Output library! With 2020, our celebrations of the 30 years of Interreg are also coming to an end. As part of the campaign, we introduce the Interreg Story map and the Interreg Talks video series, which also includes statements of Alpine politicians. Lastly, you will find a short update on the current status of the programming process for 2021-2027.

AlpWeek Intermezzo 9-11 December


This year's AlpWeek Intermezzo will be completely virtual instead of, as originally planned, in Nice (FR). Nevertheless, the event will include various engaging workshops and discussions around the main theme "Youth & Climate".


Climate change is one of the many challenges facing the Alpine region and its impact is particularly acute in the mountains. The AlpWeek offers an opportunity to discuss new ways of working and living in the mountains to counteract the challenges facing the region. Young people are warmly invited to participate, but also NGOs, politicians, educational institutions, researchers, as well as anyone who lives, works or is interested in the Alps.


The event is free of charge and the registration is still open!


To find out more about the workshops have a look at the programme.

EUSALP Annual Forum & Alpine Conference

Parallel to the AlpWeek Intermezzo, the EUSALP Annual Forum and the Alpine Conference are taking place on 10 December.


The EUSALP Annual Forum will include the general assembly in the morning and several workshops, among which the "Pitch Your Project!" finale in the afternoon. Starting from 16:35, the strategic activities of AlpGov will also be discussed in a session dedicated to the five strategic activity areas for a sustainable and resilient Alpine Region.


Don´t miss the joint session organised by the Alpine Convention, EUSALP and AlpWeek organisation committee on Thursday 10 December at 13:00 (register here). Under the topic “Young alpine citizens are committed to a climate-resilient Alpine region”, an open dialogue will take place between young people and members of the EUSALP and Alpine Convention national delegations.



Enhancing capacities for a pluralistic Alpine Space


PlurAlps aims to improve integration of migrants in the Alpine Space. In Switzerland, teachers ease the connection between the families of newly arrived children and their Swiss schoolmates. In Vorarlberg, the multi-language information website Vorarlberg Finder helps refugees find the services they need to start a life in Austria. In Piemonte, a young migrant has been trained to build a mountain farm, revitalising agriculture in the Stura valley. These and the other 11 actions tested by PlurAlps in pilot areas have made it easier for newcomers to access local resources, start their life in the Alps and meet local people. These experiences can now inspire others while giving insights into how to set up successful and sustainable integration projects.



Protecting ecosystem services beyond national borders


In October 2018, Vaia storm knocked down 42.000 hectares of woodlands in the Italian Alps. Several mountain villages suddenly found themselves under new avalanche paths as winter approached. Snowslide protection is only one of the contributions ecosystems make to human well-being, although these are often overlooked until it’s too late. The project partners of AlpES have worked to raise awareness and involve stakeholders, but also to answer the need for information of many policymakers. Gathering the policy tools available in the Alpine nations and harmonising the mapping and assessment of ecosystem services are both steps in this direction.



Municipalities join forces for sustainable and concrete energy solutions


Often, small municipalities find it impossible to optimise energy use in public buildings and infrastructures due to the high costs and technical expertise required by sustainable energy plans. Thanks to PEACE_Alps, 240 local authorities have pooled resources to access external expertise and achieve the necessary economies of scale. Thanks to the project, 15,400 street lights now use highly efficient LED lamps, while many municipalities have started monitoring their energy consumption and working to reduce waste, with the help of centralised systems. Overall these actions let save 26,637 MWh/a energy 5,581 tons of CO2 every year.



Reconnecting the youth and Alpine mountain heritage


Sustainability can become a core value in the development of the Alps only if people understand its importance, starting from the youth. Together, the 200 educators and the associations, protected areas and NGOs involved in YOUrALPS have developed a new school model to highlight the interdependent environmental and social processes taking place in the Alps. Throughout the project, over 2000 pupils have studied the Alps from various perspectives through outdoor activities, new technologies and hands-on projects.

Interreg 30 years celebrations


Interreg improves lives in the EU by helping public and private players to work together as if there were no borders. To celebrate the 30 years of Interreg this year, the Alpine Space programme is part of an Interreg story map and the Interreg Talks campaign.


The story map features fourteen Interreg transnational programmes, and highlights their achievements and the benefits they bring to the respective region. Walk through the story map here.


For the Interreg Talks campaign, Interreg transnational programmes have collected video statements by European leaders on the positive impact of Interreg in Europe. The Alpine region is represented by Brigitta Pallauf (Land Salzburg), Herbert Dorfmann (MEP for South Tyrol) and Raffaele Cattaneo (Regione Lombardia). Their statements will be released over the next weeks. In the meantime, you can watch the other videos here.

News on the future: programming 2021-2027

In the last couple of months, programme stakeholders have met several times to discuss and reach consensus on a number of matters related to the programming process, including the thematic concentration. The advanced programme draft shows a strong focus and alignment to policy objective n°2, but also addresses challenges of policy objective n°1 of the cohesion policy for 2021-2027.


The feedback received in the public consultation was considered by the programming Task Force, and a greener and smarter programme is in the making. This should also be reflected in the proposed rules and procedures. Stay tuned, as developments on that front are expected over the coming months!

AlpWeek Intermezzo - Youth & Climate
Alpine Conference 2020
BE-READI ALPS DigithON: Turn ON Digital Transformation
EUSALP Annual Forum
Digital ALPTREES Conference
ATLAS Final Conference
European Regional Development Fund