The Swedish Co2mmunity partner Energikontor Sydost, has started an engagement for the installation of PV cells in multi-family buildings. Information was provided and the interest was perceived to be strong! Naturally, as they had a great example of how a bottom-up RENCOP can work: The installation of a solar PV system by a tenants’ association in Växjö. Anders Lundgren, one of the citizens living in the house saw a potential and his community, rather the tenants’ association acted with him – to help all of them save money. Government supported the project by taking on 30% of the labour cost, again helping local artisans. Truly a bottom-up RENCOP development.
Picture: The PV system on Andres Lundgren’s building (picture credit: SVT)
A solar energy event was held in Alavus on the 26th March 2018 at the premises of Alavus City Development (Fasadi, Taitotie 1, 63300 Alavus). It served to enhance solar energy in the city of Alavus and sorroundings and also to establish a temporary, smaller RENCOP. 39 participants attended and received information on how to connect solar systems to the grid, what systems are available and what possibilities exist for the coupling solar and geothermal systems. The event was free and open for everyone and advertised by the Alavus City Development in local papers and networks as well as by Thermopolis Ltd. on its Facebook page.
One of the many projects in the heat sector already implemented in Lithuania is the renovation of an apartment building in Varena to 100% renewable heat energy and hot water supply that was completed in 2013. While the district heating system in Varena is already fired by biomass to a degree of 97 % the aim of the project was to prove a 100% off-grid solution is possible as well. To cover the heating needs of the 40 apartments in the building from green sources, 7 wells were drilled to a depth of 100m and connected to a heat pump, while hot water is provided by solar collectors on the roof. The residents covered 40% of the total cost, the city and the JESSICA programme each covered another 30%. Another article on the project can be found here.
On the 15th March, the Co2mmunity partners met in Middelfart for a field trip in Denmark and Germany. After a warm welcome by Middelfart’s mayor Johannes Lundsfreyd Jensen the group set off to chase the winds of the Baltic energy transition. The stops in Denmark included a local heating network connecting 63 houses in a small village, the Sønderborg Project Zero and a newly installed low-pressure/low-temperature grid using heatpumps and geothermal energy, which is looking for partners to install further grids in Europe. The next day in Northern Frisia, the group got to meet the people of GP Joule, whom are behind ambitious hydrogen projects, like a bus service and electrolysers. Then Co2mmunity was invited to the main office of Nordgröön, who manages the dispatch, sale and in parts consumption of renewable energy in the region to realise the full potential of the energy transition. Furthermore, Co2mmunity engaged with the community of Sprakebüll, a front-running renewable energy village using biomass, wind and solar power and sharing 20 electric cars among the 240 inhabitants, the ‘Dörpsmobile’. The third and last day of the field trip allowed the participants to enjoy the Husum New Energy Fair, where innovative and well-known technologies and approaches were presented by different companies and organisations. Additionally, interesting plenary sessions and talks offered the big picture on the energy transition. To have a look at the available presentations from the field trip click here.
In Middelfart, the first 5 RENCOP meetings were held with the communities of Vejen, Fredericia, Billund and Middelfart last month. The aim is to outphase oilboilers and replace them with heatpumps taking renewable electricity off the grid. Another round of meetings is scheduled for the 12th March where people will be offered the opportunity to buy heatpumps together.
On the 13th Februar 2018 the first RENCOP workshop was held at the Regional Council of South Ostrobothnia, to launch the idea of a RENCOP working in South Ostrobothnia with potential stakeholders. Organisations active in making community energy happen as well as interested parties attended, inlcuding representatives from research and development organisations, municipalities, financiers, associations and companies, 14 people in total. New stakeholders are of course welcome. Energies of interest identified are micro-combined heat and power generation as well as biomass, biogas, solar energy and geothermal heat.
The Enterprise Europe Network has published a short piece on Co2mmunity (German only). The Enterprise Europe Network aims to help businesses in exploring new ways. We just might find that supporting RENCOPs is a promising avenue to root your company regionally and become a partner for the citizens of the 21st century.
From the 15th to 18th of March the New Energy Fair will take place in Husum. The expected 10 000 visitors will get to know the latest and what is about to come in renewable energy, from electricity to heat. Watt 2.0 is co-organising the event and is also an associated partner of Co2mmunity. All the more reason for us to be there! On the day before the fair, we will start our field trip with all our partners in Middelfart and then head south. Looking forward to meet you! Picture by Klaus Heinrich Vanselow
The Christian-Albrechts University Kiel has published an article on Co2mmunity! The principle of the project is explained and an example for a succesful RENCOP is mentioned briefly. Namely, a small district heating for a village of about 230 people in Northern Frisia in Germany, where the muncipality, the regional energy utility and a citizens cooperative came together.
The Co2mmunity team wishes you and your loved ones a very merry Christmas and peaceful festive season! Find our postcard here to send your own greetings! With this we also take a well deserved break until the new year.