Green Districts: The City District as a Power Station

August 31, 2009 by  
Filed under Events, Insights

Speaker: Dr. Steffen Lehmann, UNESCO Chair in Sustainable Urban Development for Asia and the Pacific; Chair and Professor, School of Architecture and Built Environment, The University of Newcastle; Executive Director, s_Lab, space Laboratory for Architectural Research and Design (Berlin-Sydney)

Venue: SEI Training Room, #06-00, Environment Building 40 Scotts Road Singapore 228231

This presentation discusses the need to retrofit the existing cities and de-carbonise the energy supply, on a district-scale. Low-emission energy generation technologies can turn the city districts themselves into power stations, where energy is generated close to the point of consumption.

Localised energy generation using renewable energy sources (solar, wind, biomass, geothermal), and complemented by distributed heating and cooling systems, has a huge potential to reduce the built environment’s energy demand and emissions. Such decentralized, distributed systems, where every citizen can generate the energy needed, will eliminate transmission losses and transmission costs (which always occur with the large grid and inefficient base-load power stations) for the local consumer.

The concept can be considered for both existing and new buildings: Small power generators are positioned within communities to provide electricity for local consumption, and the waste heat they produce is captured for co-generation (for CHP; or for tri-generation, when waste heat also produces chilled water for cooling); used for space conditioning via a local district heating or district cooling system. New energy principles look at capturing and harvesting waste heat and waste water streams, and how the strategic arrangement of programme within mixed-use urban blocks can lead to unleashing such unused energy potential.

This presentation will illustrate that a low-emission future is feasible, and how cities will adapt, if countries are to meet international obligations such as those outlined in international emission agreements. However, there is urgency; without incentives, policy directions and updating the building codes, the stationary energy demand across all sectors is projected to increase further.

For details and registration, visit the SEI website.

Source: SEI

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