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LOCA2Transformation: Business model transformation in Carinthian SMEs to achieve the Green Deal targets




Total Project Duration

1 Year 9 Months

Recommended actions were proposed to support companies on the path towards climate neutrality
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The project

The aim was to qualify greenhouse gas-intensive companies in the NUTS 3 region of Lower Carinthia regarding the transition towards climate neutrality. A handbook for SMEs in manufacturing industries was developed. This contains exemplary measures that relate directly to company locations and the entire value chain. Additionally, interested companies are supported in the transition by a guide with examples of good practice.

Our activities in the project

We developed transformation paths towards climate neutrality at sector level, which were evaluated from an ecological and economic perspective. In a backcasting approach, three scenarios with different focuses were defined (efficiency, renewables, transformation). The analyses showed that reducing energy losses could make a major contribution to achieving the climate targets, in addition to switching to renewable energy sources, especially for process heat.

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Das Projekt wird mit Mitteln des Europäischen Fonds für regionale Entwicklung (EFRE) aus den zusätzlichen Mitteln von REACT-EU (Reaktion der Union auf die COVID-19 Pandemie) gefördert.

Alpe Adria Universität Klagenfurt

Details of the project

The project LOCA2-Transformation (Lower Carbon Lower Carinthia Transformation) helped small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in particular to achieve the objectives of the Green Deal. The European Commission has established a dedicated fund (Just Transition Fund) to support the transformation of greenhouse gas-intensive SMEs in regions that are particularly affected by the transition to a climate-neutral economy. This aims to promote the necessary structural change and at the same time maintain the competitiveness of companies and employment opportunities in these regions.

During the LOCA2Transformation project, the relevant sectors in the Lower Carinthia region were analysed. A survey of 50 companies was conducted to identify barriers and potentials with regard to a transformation towards sustainable business models. Subsequently, transformation paths of the relevant industries were created and evaluated ecologically and economically. Additionally, the first transformation steps of 10 companies were presented as examples of good practice.

The survey showed that companies were confronted with numerous barriers on their way to a climate-neutral business model, yet there was also potential. The good practice examples provided by specific companies could be used to identify commonalities that were of great importance in the transformation of the business models of the companies surveyed. These included in-house (renewable) energy generation, a corresponding corporate philosophy and size, the promotion of regional, close networks, a focus on sustainable products and the circular economy, measures relating to the company building and ideas relating to employee mobility.

Based on the project results, recommendations for action were developed to support companies on their way to becoming climate-neutral. The end-report provides an overview on measures that could be taken by companies, administrations, politicians, and funding organizations to support the transformation and overcome barriers.


Recommended measures:

  • Increase the conversion efficiency from primary to final to used energy
  • Increase useful energy productivity (reduction in useful energy demand for the same benefit)
  • Transition to renewable energy sources
  • Closed cycles (circular economy)

Project participants

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