Friday, 9 July 2021

REPLACE Project Presented at JOINT SECAP Workshop in Rijeka

July 9, 2021 - The REPLACE Project was presented at the JOINT SECAP workshop in Rijeka on June 23. There is no better way to end a year and a half-long Interreg project for Croatia, which was one more ecosystem-concerned cooperation between Italy and Croatia.

When it comes to energy efficiency in Croatia, there is no doubt anybody cares about it more than the scientific community working and associating with Energy Institute Hrvoje Požar (EIHP).

Not only is the EIHP building on its way to becoming the first nearly zero energy building in the whole of the country, but EIHP's expertise also plays a big role in REPLACE Project from Horizon Europe. As TCN previously covered, the project aims to make Primorje Gorski Kotar County energy-renewable territory, and the ongoing meetings about the project (in collaboration with the University of Rijeka) see slow but steady progress in those respects.

As EIHP reports on its website, June 23 saw REPLACE Project presented in the congress hall of Rijeka's Jadran Hotel as part of the final workshop of the JOINT SECAP project.

„On behalf of EIHP, Antonia Tomas Stanković presented REPLACE in the second half of the event. The goal is to support European energetic, climate, environmental, economic, and social goals by 2030 and 2050 by encouraging the gradual replacement of inefficient and outdated cooling and heating systems with new, energy-efficient systems based on renewable energy sources“, informed EIHP.

JOINT SECAP, part of Interreg Italy-Croatia strategic program (much like the CASCADE Project TCN previously wrote about) aims to improve the climate change monitoring and planning of adaptation measures tackling specific effects in the cooperation area.

„The project idea reflects the necessity to operate at a wider district level and better define strategies and actions for climate change adaptation, especially for those weather and climate changes and hydrogeological risks affecting coastal areas. The first phase is developed to build the common methodology for Joint Actions definition and implementation and to share the basic knowledge about issues concerning climate change adaptation strategies and energy efficiency measures. The second phase starts upon the analysis uploaded in the web platform, acting as a useful tool for the development of scenarios for the Joint Actions to be implemented in the Joint SECAP plans, those last constituting the main project deliverable“, explained JOINT SECAP on its website. The workshop in Rijeka was the conclusion of the project as JOINT SECAP ended on June 30 after it began on January 1, 2012, with a budget of € 2,094,857.

The workshop in Rijeka, writes the EIHP website, was organized by Primorje Gorski Kotar County Office for Regional Development Infrastructure and Project Management and by Kvarner Regional Energetic Agency. Representatives of local authorities of Primorsko-Goranska county that were enrolled in creating an Energetic and Climate Sustainable Development Action Plan. These local authorities include towns such as Opatija and Kastav and the districts of Čavle, Matulji, and Viškovo.

„Joint SECAP analyzed energy spending for the included towns and districts, their risks and vulnerability regarding climate change, yearly emissions of CO2 in sectors of building construction industry, public lighting, and traffic. Concrete measures with the goal of adjusting to the effects of climate change and CO2 emissions down to at least 55% by 2030 were suggested“, stated EIHP.

With measures identified, the race with time begins as these measures should be in place as fast as possible to tackle one of the biggest challenges humanity is facing, and Croatia isn't able to be isolated from the threat.

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Friday, 4 June 2021

CASCADE Project: Italy and Croatia Collaborating on Ecosystems Monitoring

June 4, 2021 - With the scientific community in Croatia busy and involved in international projects, meet the CASCADE Project. Learn how Italian and Croatian scientists are working together in monitoring ecosystems.

Croatian scientists in Croatia are running various projects which either don't get reported on by journalists, or if they are reported on, they sadly don't get too much attention from the public.

One such project is the Projekt CASCADE which started back on January first, 2020, and will continue until the very end of 2022.
As reported on the website of The Institute of Oceanography and Fisheries (IOR), the 5,817,547 euros, 85 % of that capital (4,944,914.95 euros) is secured by The European Regional Development Fund (ERFD).

CASCADE is short for „CoaStal and marine waters integrated monitoring systems for ecosystems protection and management“, and is part of the Interreg Italy-Croatia 2014-2020 strategic program. Assess the quality of coastal marine ecosystems in order to restore the habitats of endangered species and provide support for integrated management is the main goal set by 2022.

For the next three years, the project team from the Laboratory for Plankton and Shell Toxicity and the Laboratory for Chemical Oceanography and Sedimentology will work on monitoring, gathering knowledge about habitat and ecosystem biodiversity in the field of project cooperation (Adriatic Sea). It will participate in the establishment of new, as well as the improvement, of existing coastal systems for monitoring and management of coastal and open water ecosystems. Joint actions will assess and protect coastal and marine biodiversity and establish restoration actions. The pilot area of ​​the Institute of Oceanography and Fisheries (IOR) within the EU CASCADE project is the mouth of the Neretva River“, explains the IOR website.

There are eleven pilot areas in Croatia and Italy where the researches will be conducted: lagoon Grado and Marano and Gulf of Trieste, coastal belt of the Italian region Emilia-Romagna, marine protected area Torre Guaceto (natural reef), Punta Della Contessa, Melendugno in the Italian region of Puglia, the mouth of the Neretva river, the coastal zone of the Italian region of Veneto, mouth of the river Miljašić Jaruga, coastal belt of the Italian region of Molise, the northeastern part of the Adriatic Sea in Croatia, mouth of the river Cetina, Torre del Cerrano and Pineto Marine Park on the Abruzzo coast, and finally, the coastal zone of the Italian Marche region.

„At the mouth of the Neretva River (P4 pilot area), the IOR team members will sample sediment, shells, and seawater, depending on the type of matrix, they will analyze various parameters such as salinity, oxygen concentrations, heavy metals, and nutrients, with the aim of establishing an optimal system of observation of coastal and open waters“, added IOR.

The head of the projects within the IOR side is Dr. Sc. Ivana Ujević and various Italian and Croatian regions/counties, regional development agencies, scientific institutes, and two ministries from Italy and Croatia are included as associated partners.

Learn more about Croatian inventions & discoveries: from Tesla to Rimac on our TC page.

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Monday, 8 February 2021

Tourism4All Promotes Accessible Tourism and Season Prolongation

February 8, 2021 – As part of the Tourism4All project funded through the Interreg Italy-Croatia program, a workshop on the accessibility of tourist facilities for people with special needs and the season prolongation will be held in Zadar.

The City of Zadar is a partner in the Tourism4All project funded through the Interreg Italy-Croatia program. The project aims to develop and promote a cross-border network of accessible tourist destinations. Also, it seeks to design a common approach and methodology for the development of new tourism products focused on people with special needs, as well as to extend the tourist season.

The interest of people with disabilities and people older than 65 in traveling is continuously growing, and this segment of the tourist market has vast underutilized potential. One of the activities of the Tourism4all project is the education of employees in the tourism and cultural sector about accessible tourism.

The workshop "Accessible Tourism and Market Potentials" will be held online on Thursday, February 11, 2021, from 11 am to 12 pm. The workshop will be led by Josip Milić, Head of the Department for Preparation and Implementation of EU Projects in the City of Zadar. Ana Perica and Josip Milković from the Association of the Blind of Zadar County will also join.

With the Tourism4All project, by improving the accessibility of natural and cultural sights of selected destinations and promoting new tourist services, the social inclusion of disadvantaged or people with special needs (disabilities, the elderly) will be encouraged. Also, the project intends to reduce tourism seasonality.

The project seeks to increase the availability of tourist products and services in selected destinations with exceptional natural and cultural heritage in Croatia and Italy.

Activities include developing a common methodology, capacity building, growth of competencies in the accessible tourism sector, networking, knowledge transfer, development of new services, preparation and implementation of joint tourism promotion of involved destinations.

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Sunday, 25 October 2020

Croatia and Italy Partner in S.LI.DES: New Technologies in Sustainable Tourism Development

October 25, 2020 - Croatia and Italy partner in S.LI.DES., a project focusing on smart strategies for sustainable tourism in lively cultural destinations. 

HRTurizam reports that although the implementation of European projects requires a great deal of effort, tourist destinations recognize their importance in improving the tourist offer.

With a total budget of 2.5 million euros co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund, the Interreg Italy-Croatia project S.LI.DES. (Smart strategies for sustainable tourism in LIvely cultural DEStionations) is intended to develop innovative tools, strategies and policies that will help destinations in the sustainable management of tourism on the Adriatic coast on the Croatian and Italian sides.  Innovative tools developed using digital technologies will help reduce anthropogenic pressures on local cultural and natural heritage, as well as the resources that make up the destination's identity (crafts, cultural and creative industries) and increase the competitiveness of the local economy.

Five partner cities are involved in the project: Dubrovnik, Sibenik Venice, Bari and Ferrara. From a scientific and technical point of view, the cities are assisted by Croatian partners, the Institute for Tourism and the College of Crafts - an institution for adult education. The Italian partners in the project are the University of Venice Ca'Foscari, as the lead partner, then CISET (International Center for Tourism Economics), ECIPA (Training and Services Agency), SIPRO (Ferrara Development Agency) and CAST (Advanced Studies in Tourism) at the University of Bologna). Their scientific expertise is based on the development of innovative technologies and solutions for more efficient tourism management.


S.LI.DES. it is an excellent opportunity for partner cities to develop a database, as a kind of repository that contains tourist, economic, social, and environmental data, including a dynamic map of tangible and intangible cultural heritage and real-time tourist movement data. The development of such a database is a big undertaking since it involves a significant amount of diverse data. Given that the data are located in numerous, unrelated databases, quality cooperation with data owners, i.e., private and public bodies operating in the destination area, is needed.

In addition, the database will also include data on the popularity and places of stay of tourists downloaded from the web services GoogleTrend and TripAdvisor. Some data will be collected through an online survey of local artisans whose activities are related to art, handicrafts, authentic products and/or folk customs. Data on tourist movements will be collected using sensors and cameras, the purchase and installation of which is also one of the project activities. Ferrara was the first of the partner cities to complete the installation of six sensors, thus arousing great interest from local stakeholders within the tourism sector who saw the opportunity for many applications and requested the installation of additional sensors for their needs.

Each partner city will gain insight into the data through a specially adapted dashboard, which will enable the display of key performance indicators (KPI) and thus help local government stakeholders in better tourism management in the destination. For example, in places where large crowds are created (like the Dubrovnik city walls), visitors will be offered a choice of alternative routes where they will be able to meet local artists and craftspeople. The project aims to innovate the products of local craftspeople in order to provide tourists, in addition to shopping, with an authentic experience of making art objects.

The estimated duration of the project is 30 months, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it will be extended to 42 months. The project should be completed by June 30, 2022. 

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