Sustainable heating supply
The transition to a new, sustainable heating supply will affect all of the roughly 5,000 districts within the 145 municipalities in Liander’s service area. Every municipality was required to adopt a Transition Vision Statement for Heating by the end of 2021. This specifies when a district will transition away from natural gas and what alternative heating solution will be chosen in districts that make the transition before 2030. Liander is assisting the municipalities and provinces by giving them access to its knowledge and experience. We consider the gas grid’s service life, the social investments in it and the application possibilities to find the best balance.
Various Dutch municipalities receive a contribution from the government to make existing homes and other buildings natural gas-free – or to ensure that they are ready to become natural gas-free – using a district-oriented (‘test bed’) approach. There are eighteen test-bed districts in our service area. These test bed projects play an important role in helping us understand how we can work together to make an existing district natural gas-free. The biggest challenge is getting collective choices and timing to come together in a way appropriate to an efficient energy system. Only then can we ensure that everybody has the right supply of heat in the future, keep costs affordable, avoid repeated excavation work in streets and efficiently deploy scarce labour capacity. The municipality is responsible for managing implementation of the plans. Liander actively seeks to collaborate with municipalities, housing corporations, residents, market parties and other stakeholders. We assist in the decision-making for creating a new, sustainable energy supply and organising the process to jointly ensure smooth implementation.
Hydrogen will become part of the energy supply. When and where that will happen and to what extent hydrogen will have a place in the energy system of the future is still uncertain. Because of the long useful lives of the gas networks, we must ensure that the choices we make are future-proof, and that includes hydrogen. When making changes to the gas network, we ensure that the network is also ready for the introduction of hydrogen.