The Emscher-Lippe region has been characterised by intensive economic transformation for many years. Progressive de-industrialsation or the reorientation of industry following the disappearance of the coal and steel industry poses major challenges for regional decision-makers when it comes to countering the high unemployment rate, securing employment rates, dealing with the precarious financial situation in municipal budgets, and stabilising and repositioning the business location. The structural change in the region is not complete with the closure of the last coal mine at the end of 2018, but is entering a second phase with the coal exit in the energy sector. This should also be seen as an opportunity to innovatively redesign the Emscher-Lippe business location with its energy-rich industries and to decouple the region both energetically and materially from the use of fossil fuels.
An important pillar of regional economic development is to strengthen strategic networks and regional value chains in order to support the (medium-sized) companies located in the region and to accompany the structural change within the dominant industries in the fields of energy production and chemical industry.
The present study prepares the importance of the hydrogen economy in the Emscher-Lippe region in this context at present and could play in the future.
Johannes Venjakob, Clemens Schneider, Karin Arnold:
Konzeption einer Wasserstoffmodellregion Emscher-Lippe
Ergebnisse des gleichnamigen Teilprojekts im Rahmen von "EnerAct – Energiewende und gesellschaftliche Megatrends. Konkrete Handlungsansätze"
(Wuppertal Report no. 18)