Heating and cooling planning: a “must have” for all cities!

By Julien Joubert

The Urban Agenda for the EU: working together for better cities

The Urban Agenda for the EU is an initiative that aims at integrating cities both in the development and in the implementation process of the urban policy. Energy transition is one of its 12 priority themes: the EU wants to support the energy transition, and to provide an improved regulatory, funding and networking structure. The Energy Transition Partnership involves the European Commission, two Member States (France and Germany), several cities and regions, city networks and other stakeholders. It is led by the three cities of Gdańsk, London, and Roeselare.

The Energy Transition Partnership action plan, released in April 2019, is structured in 5 action areas:

  • Creation of a “Financing for District Energy” task group,
  • Maximising use of waste heat in cities,
  • Guidance on Energy Master-planning for cities,
  • “Deployment desks” for city retrofitting,
  • Closer co-operation with EU bodies to promote energy transition funding.

Nothing revolutionary, but these actions are key to move the energy transition forward and three of them are linked to heating and cooling planning.

Heating and cooling planning: reconnecting urban and energy policies

Heating and cooling planning presents several advantages, one of the first being that it reconnects urban policy to energy policy. For instance when the city of Caen started to work on its energy master plan, politicians and city officers realised they were building a new commercial area not far from an existing district heating and cooling (DHC) network but no one had considered the possibility to link the two. They launched an explorative study that proved it was more cost effective to supply the area with heat from DHC than to expand the gas network and the city changed the plans in order to allow that.

This article was originally published on Energy Cities website – Read all