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Cooling networks are key to facing climate change

By District Energy posted 08-01-2023 06:05




Against a backdrop of rising temperatures, recurrent heat waves and droughts, demand for cooling networks in cities is set to become a major stake over the next few years. Demand already rose 3-fold between 1990 and 2016 and the International Energy Agency (IEA) has forecast it will rise 3-fold again by 2050. Urban cooling networks are then becoming key to facing climate change as the growth of urban areas shows no sign of slackening. 

Cooling networks are a win-win solution to ramp up city decarbonation all over the world. They make it possible to use greener fuels to cool buildings and the list of assets they generate for the comfort, health and well-being of city-dwellers is hard to challenge: they entail a 90% cut in cooling fluids compared with individual air-conditioning units and a 50% cut in electricity consumption and carbon dioxide emissions while allowing for a 97% improvement in energy efficiency. 


In 2022, ENGIE’s yearly cooling-network supply reached 8TWh. In France, the Group is operating in such cities as Paris or Marseille; in Europe, it has cooling facilities in Barcelona, Lisbon or Berlin. In the latter case, ENGIE is developing a heating and cooling facility in a new eco-friendly neighborhood -”Das Neue Gartenfeld”. There are other such facilities around the world, in Dubai, Boston or Singapore where a cooling network is in its final stage of development. 

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