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Energy and housing - Lolland Municipality
Lolland municipality has a strong environmental and energy policy foundation for a strategic sector work on urban and housing development. In relation to infrastructure, they have a situation where the absence of the natural gas grid and an excess of energy from renewable sources on Lolland, which provides opportunities for work with alternative energy and heating supplies. Policy visions on the environment and energy and objectives on conversion have a very central location in the municipality's policy and strategic plans of action.
As a basis for the work with environment and energy, BASS prepared a draft for a strategy plan and plan of action: ’Green Energy Lolland Falster’ (2007),where alternative energy, business development related to energy and energy conservation in buildings were identified as priorities.
It is hence the goal that at least 90% of the heating of private and public buildings are to be based on renewable energy. Furthermore Lolland’s power consumption is to be reduced by 25% by 2025.
In October 2007 the municipality joined the Danish Society for Nature Conservation’s concept of Climate Municipalities,which commits the municipality to a 3% annual CO2 reduction. In addition, the municipality entered into a joint implementation agreement with the Santa Cruz city, county and university in California in order to generate knowledge transfer, establishing a summer university on Lolland and to put pressure on the initiatives. The municipality profiles itself actively, also with a business policy, as a spearhead municipality on energy.
Towards the Climate Conference, COP15, the innovative full-scale projects will be the starting point for marketing of the municipality and for efforts on environmental tourism. In the municipality's proposal for the local plan (februar 2008) the focus on environment, climate and energy is maintained and intensified.
The older housing stock
Lolland has a set of structural housing problems:
- A settlement and population situation, which differs from the region's more central municipalities. An excess of 1200 dwellings (primarily in rural areas)
- Declining population and lack of opportunities of attracting commuters
- An older housing stock in rural areas which is in a poor state energy-wise, oil-fired and is currently without collective energy and heat supply options
”Green Energy Lolland Falster” points on that background at the intermediate aims:
- Development of CO2-neutral alternatives to oil-based heating for all dwellings
- Boost of rural districts with an upgrade of energy standards in houses and energy collaboration between agriculture and housing
Plan for houses and settlements
In the municipality’s paper”Plan for housing and settlement in Lolland Municipality”there are priorities for condemnation and upgrading of a large part of the housing stock. The intention is to thin out the most worn part of the public housing and to get rid of empty buildings in rural areas. In relation to the ambitious goal of sustainability on the energy and heating area, it is primarily the intension to upgrade the municipality's own building stock. The municipality has in this context therefore not yet utilized the plan to set out energy requirements - perhaps out of fear that newcomers will be discouraged.
Lolland municipality illustrates the need to work with differentiated strategies for the energy part of the climate-integrated solutions for houses - strategies which take into account of the historicity and local structural and political conditions. The intense focus on high rates of renewable energy constitutes a systemic technology track, which in the long run may reduce the need for the very strict standards which comply to low-energy buildings?