PLANNING is fast-tracking to success We better get this right! One way is to understand what best practice is and how others have done. Best practice can inform us and provide guidance and inspiration to both newcomers and more experienced practitioners.
By Morten Jordt Duedahl, Business Development Manager at DBDH and Frits Verheij, Senior consultant at TNO
T his was acknowledged by EU Joint Research Centre ear- ly this year and they initiated a study of European Best Practices that interviewed 8 European district heating projects to identify what best practice was to them and them condense that to general best practices. How to best plan and construct a district heating network District heating networks are very large and not least long- term investments, they influence a lot of citizens directly through the heat bill and play a significant role in our future energy system. It requires a lot of courage to launch such a project as it will influence your city for many years to come. At the same time, district heating networks plays a major role in cities green transition towards a carbon zero society. Plan well and you will succeed Planning is always important. For district heating projects planning is a vital part of any project. A good and well-struc- tured planning process is themost essential step towards suc- cess. The study showed that the key to a successful district
Seek, and you shall find Another best practice that was mentioned by many was “seek inspiration and support from others.” The planning and con- struction of DH networks is, for many cities, not something that is everyday work. Reaching out to colleagues can give you a lot of knowledge, information, inspiration, and support - colleagues in your own country and from abroad. All inter- viewees mentioned the national network as an invaluable source, as this network can easier relate the specific project to local conditions. Antwerp and Salaspilz also mentioned their international relations as a very powerful inspiration as they found it challenging to find the relevant experience locally. What have we done to determine best practices? The Danish Board of District Heating (DBDH) and TNO from the Netherlands investigated the best practices in planning and construction of district heating. Specifically, they asked JRC for best practices for networks being built in an existing build environment. No greenfield areas were allowed in the study! And the projects had to be relatively new, and all built within the last five years.
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