Fossil-free heating and cooling: Local planners to be supported by European initiative
Heating and cooling accounts for about half of Europe’s total energy needs, with 75% still dependent on fossil fuels. The majority of this energy demand is met by local or regional governments and their affiliated partners, such as energy utilities.
Therefore, to dramatically decrease the dependency on fossil fuels and increase the share of renewable energy being used in European homes, action has to be taken at the local level, involving a variety of stakeholders. In order to accelerate this energy transition, a newly launched European-wide Support Facility is being made available for local energy planners.
Strategic heating and cooling (H&C) planning requires know-how, resources and experience, and not all municipalities are equally prepared for this transition. This is where the new Support Facility comes in with specific tools and assistance.
Initiated by the Fraunhofer Institute (DE) with support from eclareon (DE), TU Wien (AUT), CSE — Centre for Sustainable Energy (UK), CREARA (ES), e-think (AUT) and ICLEI Europe, the Act!onHeat project will support municipalities to start, complete or improve their H&C planning. In accordance, the Support Facility is based on the Act!onHeat project’s suggested workflow for strategic H&C planning.
Applicants will be selected based on their ambition, interest, and needs. Once the relationship is established, clustered and individual advice will be given on planning, pre-feasibility and finance. Specifically, applicants will gain exclusive access and insight to the well established H&C planning open access software Hotmaps and THERMOS, which can be used for their local energy transition.
The individual support is possible due to funding from the EU’s Horizon 2020 Programme, which funds the Act!onHeat Support Facility and funded the development of Hotmaps and THERMOS.