Energy Cities proposition 11 - Prepare a local heat plan to match need and available resource

Knowing our territories’ resources and flows


Energy Cities

Energy Cities is a network of more than 1,000 cities in 30 different countries. Convinced that energy transition is more than a question of renewable energy or advanced technologies, Energy Cities proposes to use resources in a reasoned way, to strengthen local participation and to improve the quality of life in a democratic Europe. In 2014, the network presents 30 proposals for the Energy Transition of Territories.

They are a source of inspiration to think and act differently. To finally turn the page on unsustainable practices that lead us into energy, climate and perhaps economic and social dead ends.

To download : cahier_short_jan2014_en.pdf (6.8 MiB)

Energy Cities proposition 11 - Prepare a local heat plan to match need and available resource

The problem at hand

We need more heat and cooling than electricity although we paradoxically attach more importance to the latter. All buildings have heating and/or cooling requirements and heat sources are often available nearby. These can take many forms: power plant, combined heat and power unit, waste incineration plant, free industrial heat, wastewater, refrigerating units, data centres, surplus capacities from biomass boilers, etc. There are also low temperature heat sources that can be used for cooling, like rivers, lakes and seas.

There is often no relation between supply and demand. Why is that so? Is it due to a lack of information, to differing legal entities or are solutions considered as too complex? We use energy to produce heat whereas heat sources are wasted nearby.

Such a situation is no longer acceptable in a world that is putting energy abundance behind it.


Prepare a local heat plan, listing and locating all heating and cooling requirements and surplus resource potential in the territory.

This spatial inventory will be part of the sustainable energy action plan (SEAP) and aims to eliminate heat wastage by making use of currently unused heat sources. The plan may introduce an obligation to inform municipal services when applying for planning permission.

Conditions for success

→ Communicating on available heat sources, both in terms of quantities and quality.


To go further