Energy generation and supply
The generation and supply of energy is of central importance for climate protection. In Hannover, the Stadtwerke Hannover AG energy utility runs electricity and heating plants with sufficient capacity to fully meet the needs of local consumers. All of the conventional plants employ co-generation of heat and power, which forms the basis of Hannover's environmentally friendly district heating system.
The Climate Protection Action Programme, which was jointly presented in 2008 by the City of Hannover and the Stadtwerke AG, shows that measures undertaken by the Stadtwerke alone have the potential to produce almost 40 percent of the city's planned CO2 savings. The Stadtwerke has submitted a comprehensive catalogue of proposed measures to the Climate Alliance. These measures, when implemented, will account for round about 700,000 tonnes in CO2 savings.
In addition to this reduction commitment the Stadtwerke has two other energy-saving targets. First, it has committed to further reducing its specific CO2 emissions from own electricity generation to 730 grams of CO2 per kilowatt hour; this represents a reduction of approx. 23.5 percent compared to 1990. Second, it has pledged to increase the share of its electricity generated from renewable sources and CHP to 30 percent by 2020. Due to the planned increase in own generation and the reduced amount of heat generated, this means an overall increase in electricity generated from renewables and CHP of 50 percent.
The aims of the Stadtwerke have been set down in a programme of measures that is also economically viable. Certain elements of the programme have already been implemented. For example, the decision has been made to extend and modernise the gas and steam plant at the Linden thermal power station. This will avoid 210,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year. The Stadtwerke is also currently developing a plan to further extend its district heating network. To extend the share of its electricity generated from renewable sources the Stadtwerke is not only focusing on regional activities in the area of biomass, but also on its newly established investment company 8KU Renewables GmbH.
With its voluntary commitment the Stadtwerke is taking responsibility for a reduction in CO2 emissions on the supply side (provision of electricity and heat). However, the 2005 CO2 report showed that the Climate Alliance's targets cannot be met without serious efforts on the demand side too. The Stadtwerke is taking this fact into consideration; its climate protection fund proKlima is currently expanding its activities and will focus increasingly on the electricity sector. Whether consumers actually save energy is essentially up to them. The Stadtwerke will continue to lend its assistance – in addition to its investment in proKlima it will also run high-profile energy-saving campaigns and provide energy consulting.