Nantes Métropole - The renewable heating network allows a drop in carbon intensity

Assessment of the territories’ climate action


Association Climate Chance (Climate Chance)

Since 2015, the Climate Chance Association has been involved in the mobilization in the fight against climate change. It is the only international association that proposes to bring together on an equal footing all the non-State actors recognized by the UN. In order to strengthen their action and to give credibility to the climate stabilization scenarios, the Climate Chance Association launched in 2018 a Global Observatory of Non-State Climate Action, which aims to explain the evolution of greenhouse gas emissions, by crossing national public policies, with sectoral dynamics, private actors’ strategies, local public policies, and actions undertaken by the actors of the territory. In order to analyse the coherence of local public policies, Climat Chance proposes an assessment of « territorial mobilisations » through selected examples of cities and regions. Here, the city of Nantes.

The Nantes objectives take up the main lines of the European Union’s energy-climate package, with objectives that go beyond that : - 30% of GHG emissions and energy consumption per capita by 2020, and - 50% by 2030, compared to 2003. The BASEMIS® data for 2008/2016 show that the GHG emissions trajectory should enable these targets to be met (already -20% since 2003), provided that the actions already undertaken are continued and strengthened. For energy consumption, the trajectory is less favourable with an overall reduction of 13% since 2003.


In 2017, more than 50% of the territory’s renewable production will come from wood energy (533 GWh), followed to a lesser extent by waste recovery (226 GWh), geo-aerothermal energy (169 GWh), and solar energy (27 GWh). Local renewable and recuperation energies accounted for 12.4% of the energy consumption of the tertiary and residential sectors in metropolitan France in 2017 , an increase of 73% compared to 2008. A key element in the mitigation strategy is the development of renewable heating networks, a central investment under the Climate Plan, adopted in 2006. By 2017, more than 30,000 homes (8%) will be connected to one of the six heating networks, 67% of which (84% for the Centre Loire network, the largest) will be supplied by renewable or recovered energy (wood and waste incineration) and will produce 324 GWh. In 2016, 52% of the heat distributed will be for housing, and the remaining 48% for public facilities. With the planned commissioning in 2019 of the 33-km-long Nord-Chézine network connected to the waste treatment plant in Couëron, an additional 9,500 housing units will benefit from an eco-responsible heating system. For households, this method represents a financial saving of 5% to 15% compared to gas heating. Finally, it should be noted that more than 46% of social housing in the City of Nantes was served by the heating network in 2016 (for a target of 50% in 2020). Thanks to these 110 km of network, 44,309 tCO2eq have been avoided.


Nantes has seen a significant drop in its road transport-related GHG emissions. A pioneer in the revival of the tramway in the 1980s, it continued with the Chronobus and Busway. The Busway (line 4) is one of the main public transport routes in the city, with nearly 9.5 million journeys made in 2017, i.e. 40,000 per day. Today, some 20 vehicles travel on these 7 km of reserved lanes. Starting in the autumn of 2019, it will be redesigned to become the E-busway, with an electric motor. A victim of its success, the Busway is now saturated at rush hour and must therefore increase its capacity, comfort and operation. With 22 bi-articulated E-Busways of 24 m and 150 seats each, 55,000 passengers a day can be transported (35% more than today). 100% electric, the E-Busway offers low energy costs, no direct GHG emissions (1,330 tCO2 avoided), and reduced noise pollution. A recharging system will allow continuous service. This project benefits from financial support from the government (future investment programme) and the European Union (Horizon 2020 programme). It is also part of a coherent policy on motorbikes, which includes the development of soft modes of transport such as cycling.


To go further