DISTRICT HEATING AND COOLING IS A NATURAL PART OF THE URBAN INFRASTRUCTURE IN MODERN CITIES. But who should start and how? Policymaker or end-user?
City councils Our recommendations to city councils are to integrate district heating and cooling infrastructure in the urban planning as this network infrastructure is a strong natural monopoly, which should be owned and planned in a way that is to the benefit of all building owners in the city: Let the city council form an overall energy policy, e.g., with the objective to ensure cost-effective, secure, low carbon, and environmentally friendly thermal services to all citi- zens that are in accordance with the national energy pol- icy. Let the standing committee for energy and environment be responsible to the council for implementing this policy and ensure commitment from all other sectors in the city, e.g., transport infrastructure and spatial planning. Let the public utility, managed by this committee, establish a branch for heating and cooling infrastructure in the city, parallel to similar services for water and wastewater, roads and traffic, etc., in order to develop this service to the ben- efit of the energy consumers and with the aim to minimize costs of these services for all consumers.
Ensure that all public buildings and social housing build- ings which are publicly funded are connected to the district heating and cooling grids. Campus owners Our recommendations to public and private industrial campus owners are:
Take an active part as a stakeholder in the city energy plan- ning process.
Regularly update business plans for the campus energy system with the aim to provide sufficient resilient, environ- mentally friendly energy services like electricity, process en- ergy, and thermal comfort in the most cost-effective way, including the cost of building envelope, HVAC systems, net- works, and storage facilities, and production. Take into account and benefit from the interaction with the energy infrastructure in the city around the campus in the stakeholder analysis and for implementing projects of com- mon interest. Share experience and be a role model for individual build- ing owners in other city districts by demonstrating how to develop least-cost solutions for all buildings in a district.
Transparently operate the utility and let consumers be rep- resented on the board.
Developers Our recommendations to developers are:
Regular update of business plan with a focus on the aim of the company, on the present situation, and on opportuni- ties for meeting the objectives even better. Invite major owners of infrastructure for energy and envi- ronment as well as all industries which can use or produce energy into an open planning process with all relevant data available, from the first screening to final feasibility studies and agreements to be approved by the board of utilities and the city council.
Developers can, like campus owners, identify the most cost-effective and sustainable solution for the urban devel- opment area as a whole, considering the opportunities for taking part in the urban infrastructure. Plan for solutions that are the most cost-effective for energy consumers in the long term, taking into the long lifetime of building and energy infrastructure
Use stakeholder analysis to identify the best solution for all and alternatives for sharing the responsibility and benefit/risk.
In most cases, district heating and/or district cooling will be the most cost-effective solution to meeting the objectives.
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