The European Commission has announced the approval of an investment package worth more than €14bn of EU funds to promote sustainable infrastructure.
The EU funded projects will cover several key areas such as environment, health, transport and energy for a smarter, low-carbon Europe. These projects represent a massive investment to boost the economy, protect the environment and improve citizens’ quality of life and social well-being.
Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms, Elisa Ferreira, said: “In such difficult times for our continent, it is crucial that Cohesion policy continues to play its role in supporting the economy for the benefit of our citizens.
“Today’s major project adoptions show that EU funding, and Cohesion policy in particular, delivers concrete results, helping regions and cities becoming a safer, cleaner and more comfortable place for people and business.
“Many of the approved projects also help delivering on the goals of the European Green Deal. When the European Commission, Member States and regions join forces, we can achieve a lot.”
€1.4bn of EU funds will be distributed to 14 large infrastructure projects in seven member states; Poland, Czechia, Hungary, Portugal, Romania, Croatia, and Spain.
Poland: Promoting the use of clean energy and transport
A power transmission line and power substations in Northern and North-Western Poland will be financed by an EU investment of over €54m from the Cohesion Fund. Covering an area of almost 380km, the project will support the generation of clean and safe energy.
An additional investment of almost €85m from the European Regional Development Fund will improve public transport in Olsztyn by extending the existing tram and bus routes and installing an intelligent transportation system.
More than €38m of the fund will be used to modernise the tram network in Bydgoszcz, in the Kujawsko-Pomorskie region.
Over €76m from the European Regional Development Fund will also allow Poland to modernise four railway lines for a total length of almost 52km in the Śląskie region.
Czechia: Decreasing the number of regional blackouts
An investment of almost €37m from the European Regional Development Fund will finance a new, reliable double-circuit power line. This project will increase energy security and renewable energy generation, while also decreasing the number of regional blackouts and grid failures.
Hungary: Improving flood safety and water management
Over €49m from the Cohesion Fund will be used to increase flood safety for the people in the valley of the Tisza river, especially as a response to the extreme floods over the past decades.
€96m from the Cohesion Fund will also protect over 132,000 inhabitants from flood risk in the Upper-Tisza. In order to support a water based economy, this project will also improve sustainable water management.
Portugal: Upgrading public transport
The Cohesion Fund will invest €107m into Porto’s metro line system. This funding will reduce traffic and pollution while also guaranteeing safer, faster and more comfortable journeys for passengers.
Romania: Access to clean water and better healthcare for all
€486.6m from the Cohesion Fund will provide access to better quality drinking water and proper wastewater treatment for over 400,000 people in South-West Romania, while also preventing the contamination of groundwater in the North-East’s Suceava county for 220,000 inhabitants.
EU will also invest €47m from the European Regional Development Fund to improve the quality and efficiency of medical services in the North East region.
Croatia: Overhauling sustainable transport
21 new electric trains will be financed using over €119m from the Cohesion Fund. The European Commission hopes this will boost service quality, reduce delays and encourage sustainable transport.
Atlantic corridor: Improving rail connection
The European Regional Development Fund will invest €265m to improve over 178km of the rail connection in the 715km Madrid-Lisbon high-speed line, and especially in the Extremadura area. This project is part of the TEN-T network’s Atlantic Corridor connecting South West Europe to the rest of the EU.