Page 9 - European Energy Innovation - Summer 2017 publication
P. 9

Summer 2017 European Energy Innovation  9


District energy – from good

intentions to tangible results

By Steen Schelle Jensen, Head of Product Management, Kamstrup

Everybody’s talking about it: the potential of                   This is in itself a positive development, but while it may be
district heating and cooling in an energy efficient              driven by the end users, transparency from smart metering
future. But who or what is going to ensure that                  brings with it major improvement opportunities for utilities
it is fulfilled? The current revisions of EU energy              as well. These include operations optimisation, enhanced
legislation in the Winther Package is a positive                 asset management and digitalisation. Ultimately, smart
expression of great intentions – and the higher the              meter data enables smarter decisions.
ambitions, the better the results.
                                                                 TURNING ASSESSMENTS INTO ACTION
The potential of district energy is not only broadly             Article 14 directs member states to carry out a
recognised, but has been positioned by the European              comprehensive assessment of the potential for district
Commission as key to reaching our future energy targets.         energy based on the use of heating and cooling from waste
The ongoing revisions of the directives on Renewable             heat and renewable energy sources. Assessments have
Energy (RED), Energy Efficiency (EED) and the Energy             been completed in most member states but vary in quality
Performance of Buildings (EPBD) bode well and represent a        and vision due to limited knowledge and experience with
step forward in the district energy sector.                      district energy in some countries. At best, they outline a
                                                                 blurry starting point rather than provide a clear view of
In the legislative framework, it is primarily EED articles 9-11  the finishing line. The challenge now is to qualify these
and 14 together with article 7 in the RED, that are to drive     assessments based on the extensive research performed
the challenge of turning potential and good intentions           by e.g. Heat Roadmap Europe, and to then define specific
for district energy into tangible results. If done right, the    actions. Here, strong national commitment will be the lever
updated legislation will provide the basis for an energy         for further development of district energy.
supply that is efficient, secure and green.
                                                                 THE END OF THE BEGINNING
END USERS AT THE CORE                                            In the efforts to sharpen the current proposals, neither
Following the New Deal for Energy Consumers, end                 member states nor the European Parliament should fear
users have been placed comfortably at the centre of the          biting off more than they can chew. Research combined
Energy Union, and the adaptation of articles 9-11 on             with best practice from more experienced nations prove the
metering and billing information is set to further empower       potential and vital role of district heating as the corner stone
European consumers. Increased transparency from clearer          of the integrated energy system of the future – so bite away.
consumption information and advanced technology                  This is our chance to ensure that today’s legislation gets us
including smart meters, will enable them to better               to where we need to be.
understand and reduce their consumption saving both
money and energy.                                       l
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