Renewable energy for district heating and cooling in Cracow
Cracow is one of Poland's most important economic centres and the economic hub of the Lesser Poland (Małopolska) region. The city is also one of the co-location centres of Knowledge and Innovation Community (Sustainable Energy) of The European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) hosting the office of the EIT InnoEnergy. The partners of the EIT InnoEnergy have jointly developed a strategy to tackle the weaknesses of the European innovation landscape in the field of sustainable energy in order to build a sustainable long-lasting operational framework amongst the three actors of the Knowledge triangle in the energy sector.
About 70% of all residential and 50% of all commercial buildings in Cracow and in the adjacent Skawina are connected to district heating. In the 1990s, the City of Cracow made significant progress in reducing air pollution and in improving energy efficiency and environmental performance of the district heating system. However, until the end of 1997 limits were set by the Ministry of Finance on the amount of tariff increases the district heating enterprises could make which causes delays in the implementation of the modernization programs as the level of internal cash generated by most district heating enterprises was inadequate to meet their resource requirements.
Thus, the intention of the CapaCity workshop was, as part of the “WienTage (ViennaDays)”, to exchange knowledge on the improvement of the energy management of the City of Cracow by optimisation of the use of heat by modernising the network (upgrading to smart grids) and to use of excess heat during summer time for district cooling. Furthermore, it was expected that based on the workshop a common project could be drafted in order to obtain funding from the European Union.
The workshop was a combination of a plenary session, which gave an introduction and general overview of several aspects of the situation followed by a workshop session.