Support will be given to cost-effective solutions for district heating and/or cooling systems which allow satisfying at least 50% of the energy demand of the system by the use in the district of one or more renewable energy technologies. The integration of sources of otherwise wasted excess heat is in the scope.
The solutions should be demonstrated in real conditions within an operational district heating and/or cooling system.
The consortium is expected to engage operators and final users (in particular if the users need different supply temperatures) so that they can contribute for an optimal and cost-effective design. The requirements of the final users (e.g. in terms of metering) for the day-to-day operation shall be taken into account.
Proposals are expected to bring the technologies to TRL 6 (please see part G of the General Annexes).
The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of between EUR 8 to 15 million would allow this challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.
There is a large potential to integrate substantial shares of renewable energy generation in district heating and/or cooling systems. Innovative approaches are needed to exploit this potential in the different geographical regions of Europe, also considering the options of combining two or more renewable energy technologies and integrating excess heat. The operators and users expect the systems to be reliable and to have limited installation and running costs. This challenge is in line with what identified priorities in the context of the SET-Plan.
A reduced dependency of district heating and/or cooling systems on fossil fuels and reduced greenhouse gas emissions are expected, as well as reduced emissions of air pollutants. Furthermore, the project should improve the attractiveness of ""renewable"" district heating and/or cooling systems, especially in those EU countries where such systems currently have very limited or no application.