01 Sep 2022

DH network between Germany & Poland included in first CEF renewable energy cross-border projects

Goerlitz (DE) and Zgorzelec (PL) will invest in RES heat generation and connect its district heating networks with a cross-border pipeline, to jointly supply the European city with climate-neutral district heating based on a RES generation of 160 GWh per year.

Please note that this information was originally shared by the European Commission in two articles (here and here)

The European Commission has established the first list of renewable energy cross-border (CB RES) projects under the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF). The list marks the start of the implementation of the window of the CEF Programme, dedicated to renewable energy and decarbonisation.

CB RES projects are identified by the CEF Regulation and aim to promote cross-border cooperation between EU countries (and between EU countries and non-EU countries) in the field of planning, development and cost-effective exploitation of renewable energy sources. In addition, CB RES projects may facilitate RES integration through energy storage or hydrogen production facilities with the aim of contributing to the EU’s long-term decarbonisation strategy. CB RES projects need to be set-up by a cooperation mechanism as defined in the recast of the Renewable Energy Directive.

This first list comprises three projects, relevant for a total of seven EU countries:

  • a hybrid offshore wind park between Estonia and Latvia
  • a cross-border district heating grid based on RES between Germany and Poland
  • a project to produce renewable electricity in Italy, Spain and Germany for conversion, transport and use of green hydrogen in the Netherlands and Germany


The cross-border district heating grid, promoted by Regionalwerk Chiemgau-rupertiwinkel, is the Eneregio SOBOS study, which will receive EUR 200.000 to investigate the feasibility of a supra-regional supply of district heating. The geographical scope of the study covers parts of southern Germany (Bavaria) and Austria (Upper Austria and Salzburg).

The aim is to analyse the potential and feasibility of a cross-border heating system that would be supplied by waste energy from local industry, geothermal and bioenergy plants. As a result of the Eneregio SOBOS study, a cross-border renewable energy project will be defined, relying on data collection of heat sources and sinks/heat demands in the industry and customer sectors.

If the expected potential is confirmed, the supra-regional district heating could lead to over 2 TWh of heat being supplied from sustainable sources. The transnational network of heat sources and heat sinks from different processes via a district heating transport system will tap into the geological potential for renewable energy deployment and enable the cross-border and year-round use of CO2-free heat for the supply for the entire districts, thus leading to the diversification of the heat supply, reduction of regional reliance from fossil fuels and ultimately of the dependence on energy imports from outside the EU.

By acquiring the official CB RES status, projects are now eligible for financial support for studies and works under the CEF Programme.

Commissioner Simson said:

The three projects selected today are only the beginning: we are accelerating the deployment of renewable energy across the EU and moving towards a more collaborative approach as we do so. The full potential for green transition and decarbonisation of the EU can only be realised through joint efforts across all sectors, technologies and regions.

The realisation of the projects in the first CB RES list will make an important contribution to the increased renewable energy ambition under the European Green Deal, as well as to the objectives of the REPowerEU. The Commission, with the support of the European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency, will monitor the implementation of the CB RES projects and will soon make available information on the status of the projects via a public portal.