A consideration Jens Andersen has made as a member of DBDH was that Næstved District Heating could be useful when setting up export activities: "We have an idea that if the suppliers in the energy industry are strong, both in the domestic market but also the foreign market, they can develop the right business solutions and deliver better products to us. And if we can help the industry when it comes to export, by strengthening other companies and by contributing to their willingness to invest in district heating, this interaction would also be beneficial for us".
The Heating Plan 2010 for Næstved Municipality has great influence on Næstved District Heating’s goal for 2035. It states, for example, that the city of Næstved will expand its district heating network, reaching a coverage of 90% of the city – the plant currently contributes with a coverage of 50%. Jens Andersen is satisfied about this plan, because it is actually the one highlighting that they need to expand and support the municipality’s CO2 policy in this field: "It is up to us, as energy suppliers in Næstved, to take up the challenge and then make some projects that support the municipality's policy. And we do that - we elaborate these projects. The plan is not legally binding, but if we can see that it is economically viable for new customers and also favorable for our existing customers, we surely take action".
The political side of district heating is extremely interesting for Næstved District Heating. Denmark has a great tradition of making energy settlement, widely through all political parties, so that one knows that even if a change in government occurs, politicians will stand behind the energy settlement that has been made. As Jens Andersen explains: "This means that when we engage in investments for the next 20-30 years, we are fairly sure that the energy settlement will continue to be valid. That is the whole reason why we in Denmark produce relatively inexpensive heating and that we have an enormously high energy utilization. It contributes to making Denmark an extremely energy efficient country, so we need to stick to it". Jens Andersen believes that a restructuration of the energy analysis is necessary, by taking a deep look into the current tariff structure, in order to better support the green transition: "This is something we are truly lacking and it is deeply damaging to our industry. The Parliament has now looked into it long enough, but we are actually failing to live up to the government's plan, because we do not know which level the tariffs be taken to. Therefore, my call to the politicians is: 'Wrap up this tariff structure once and for all, so we can finally move forward".
There is a huge potential and huge amounts of energy available, which are renewable energy sources, but Jens Andersen believes that the uncertainty surrounding the tariff structure is a significant threat to the energy efficiency: “One example that many are talking about is the conversion that has happened in order to make room for wind-based electricity production. It is great for the environment, but at the moment we cannot utilize this power surplus. Therefore we often see that people actually have to pay to get rid of the power surplus coming from the wind turbines – but we might as well use it in the district heating system, in our district heating pumps. Still not possible, because of the high prices of doing so”, according to Jens Andersen. Næstved District Heating has also made an analysis that shows that if 1 degree could be drawn out of the energy in the Suså River - Denmark's fifth largest river, which runs right through the city of Næstved -, the plant would be able to supply the city four times. "We just need to have the right tariff system supporting it. The tariff system, as it is right now, does not support green transition; it supports the execution of efficient solutions for society. How does the future for the energy sector look like? We need to look into that before we can engage in new, large investments. We must know it, and our customers should certainly also know which tariffs are to be expected”, says Jens Andersen.
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