05. Mar 2014 - Energy-efficient Ludwigsburg
Photo: Working groups at one of the Ludwigsburg Future Search conferences. Citizens discuss current municipal energy issues. Source: City of Ludwigsburg
The City of Ludwigsburg has many years of experience in energy efficiency and climate protection. The basis for this is the “Opportunities for Ludwigsburg” urban development concept that provides guiding principles and goals for eleven aspects of sustainable urban development, ranging from energy, business, work and mobility to living and vigorous urban districts. These topics are continually updated as part of the integrated sustainability management. Based on this, a communal energy and climate protection concept has been developed, which is currently being implemented in the form of numerous individual projects. It is important to share such experience – as part of international collaborations, too. Local administrators and politicians have therefore participated in different energy and climate projects, including in European Union (EU) programmes such as “Managing Urban Europe 25” within the 6th Framework Energy Research Programme and “Snowball”, which forms part of the Intelligent Energy Europe programme. In January 2011, the City of Ludwigsburg won the European Energy Award. It is currently participating in the “livinggreen”, EnSURE and “Sustainable Now” EU projects. As part of the Baden-Württemberg sustainability strategy, a model project for achieving more energy efficiency in commercial enterprises is currently being conducted in the municipal area.
The secret of success
Ludwigsburg has managed to create a culture of collaboration in municipal climate protection, which is based on long-standing opportunities for public participation and dialogue. These include annual Future Search conferences, which have been addressing and debating topical municipal energy issues since 2005. The “Energy Master Plan” for Ludwigsburg and the detailed concepts and strategies for urban development form the basis for this participative collaboration. The implementation is supported by the “Sustainable Urban Development department”, which combines the sustainable urban development tasks as an interdisciplinary unit, deals with them in a process-oriented manner and links them with all administrative activities.
EnEff:Stadt pilot project
The city is also participating in research activities to provide a stimulus for municipal practice. One example is the “Integrated district energy concept for Ludwigsburg Grünbühl/Sonnenberg” pilot project. As part of the “Energy-Efficient City” research initiative funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, a district energy concept is being developed that provides the basis for implementing innovative local district heating as well as exemplary refurbishment and new building projects in the two districts. In addition, the International Energy Agency has selected the city for a model project in its “Energy Efficient Communities” programme. In a study for this, all of the city’s activities related to energy efficiency were analysed and recommended measures were revealed. The basis for the analysis was provided by the “Opportunities for Ludwigsburg” urban development concept, the urban climate protection and energy concept as well as case studies for energy-efficient urban development.
One thing was clear at the EnEff:Stadt Conference: for Albert Geiger, Head of the Sustainable Urban Development department, the key question extends far beyond Ludwigsburg: “How can more cities and municipalities be motivated to start climate protection projects and network with each other? In terms of overall general policy, that particularly means utilising the local potential – for example, in Ludwigsburg that includes the long-standing experience with redevelopment projects and participative processes in the urban and district development. This is where majorities are created in social debates such as climate protection.” However, Geiger believes that municipal administrations must rethink their approach: “They also need to cover more aspects, supplement proven principles and become even more professional to become expert partners for business, for example. This is because investors now demand sustainable framework conditions from local authorities, including in the energy sector.” Urban development and climate protection concepts or the municipal Energy Master Plan provide excellent references for this. They represent clear goals, planning security and binding measures for all stakeholders. Geiger’s conclusion: “However, the key factor for success is public participation. You have to talk with the citizens: without requiring a specific occasion, but not without content!”
Further information is provided by the City of Ludwigsburg website in the “Urban development” area.
To the EnEff:Stadt project business card “Integrated energy district concept for Ludwigsburg Grünbühl/Sonnenberg”.