Western Harbour again - solar thermal to the left, Solar PV shading to the rightIt works well but the one on the other side of the Western Harbour isn’t performing – geology is a difficult science. Likewise they have a small sewage biogas plant which feeds into the gas main I’m surprised at this – in Germany I was told that district heating can’t compete with gas. In Sweden it’s a different story it seems and Li shows me some good graphs from Sven Werner which illustrate clearly that the reduction in carbon intensity of Swedish energy goes hand in hand with their move away from oil as main fuel for district heating. They also shows the long lead times from the decision to implement an energy choice (when they moved to nuclear from oil for example) to the point where the energy mix actually changes. But, as elsewhere the approach seems to be small but visible installations of experimental technology and relying on tried and trusted means for the main provision.
I ask about objections but it seems that the major objections to the scheme were from locals who were worried it would become a rich people’s playground that they would be excluded from and that the council has repeatedly made it clear that it will never become a gated community and that the public areas will remain public. This has been the case with the area become a popular place for people to hang out. I recall Tor told me this as well – that the new residents complain a lot about it. He sighed when he told me and I thought how tough it must be to be a planner – worse than an engineer because we only get noticed if we get it wrong whereas from a planners viewpoint you’ll always be in the wrong from someone’s perspective.
After my meeting with Li I get some food from a supermarket and go to sit on the harbour front at Western Harbour to eat it, hopefully upsetting the posh people by doing so. Then I go back to the bath house at the end of the pier, just because I can, before getting another train to Copenhagen for a sixteen hour train journey to Amsterdam.