Rhein-Hunsrück District, Germany
The district Rhein-Hunsrück located in the west of Germany annually spends approximately 290 million euros on energy import. In 2011 the district council adopted a climate protection concept that includes the goal to keep this money in the region. Through improvements in energy efficiency and the extension of renewable energies the district wants to convert energy import costs into regional jobs and value added. They want to reduce the carbon footprint fifteenfold. They don’t want to be dependent on energy imports anymore but plan to become an energy exporter. Since summer 2012 more renewable electricity is produced than consumed. By the end of 2015 18 biomass plants , nearly 4.182 solar plants and 252 wind turbines have been installed. The total power generation of renewable electricity plants in Rhein-Hunsrück thereby was at 273% of the district’s total power consumption in the end of 2015.
Since 1999 energy in the district-owned buildings has been monitored in order to reduce energy consumption. By that heat demand could be reduced by 26 % and water demand by 34 %. The CO2 emissions were reduced by 9.500 tons, the cost savings amount to 2 million euro. The electricity consumption increased only about 1 %, despite doubling number of PC‘s, introduction of air-conditioned server, introduction of catering and of all-day-school. Without additional measures of energy controlling the increase would have amounted to 30%. The energy controlling was the start for energy efficiency in the building sector. Since 2009 buildings owned by the district meet all requirements of passive house standards. An energy generating administration building was constructed for the waste-management enterprise. Based on the operating experience in the region energy efficiency has been recognized as the “sleeping giant” which now has been awoken.
In the process of issuing the climate protection concept nine workshops with different topics have been conducted in the years 2010 and 2011. Approximately 300 participants from several sectors (e.g. schools, mayors, craft, enterprises, architects, energy consultants, adult education centers, farmers) were involved in the whole process. These participants are still working in commodity teams as the climate-protection network from the district of Rhein-Hunsrück.
To reach the renewable target by 2050 a diversity of technologies is necessary. Therefore, the district promotes energy efficiency technologies as well as biomass, forest residues, tree and shrub cuttings for bio-heating-networks, solar energy or wind power.
Thursday, July 20th, 2017