The SAFE-ICE Cluster project has now closed, and, in 18 months, completed and delivered significant contributions to the transition to a low-carbon economy in Europe in general and the four Member States (BE, FR, NL, UK) in particular.

Unless we face up to the challenge of climate change, future generations will not only be forced to live in a deteriorating environment, but the very basis of our economy will be threatened by carbon-intensive energy sources. Solutions will not be found by working in isolation, or behind international barriers. Successful ideas must be quickly shared and gaps between policy and market identified if they are to have maximum impact.

SAFE-ICE is a cluster, led by Hastings Borough Council, that brings together ten Interreg IVA 2 Seas Projects (SISCoACEFUSIONECOMINDINSPIRER and 5 associated projects) who are all working in the low carbon economy. The aim of the cluster is to pull together the results and learnings from these projects to develop a common understanding of what the low carbon economy is across the 2 Seas region, highlighting good practice in terms of research, innovation and business support.

The cluster consists  of 2 phases. Phase 1 will look at consolidating the project findings working in four expert working groups, adding value to the results by identifying opportunities, gaps and barriers. The findings will be showcased at an event in Antwerp in April 2014, followed by a publication and website resource. Phase 2 will look at identifying critical areas for future development and ensuring that the work of the cluster is made most effective to deliver a low carbon economy against a backdrop of financial austerity and changing policies.

The consortium consists of ten formal partners from four European countries who join forces to take up this challenge: Hastings Borough CouncilCity of GhentGhent UniversityWest Flanders Intermunicipal AssociationBusiness Support Kent CiCDCMR Environmental Protection Agency, Kamp C | Provincial Centre for Sustainable Building and LivingKent County Council, Municipality of Schiedam and Littoral Habitat. The partnership is supported by another ten associated partners.