Green Cities Fit for Life

Image by Ursula Bach

Freiburg

Energy from Wind, Sun and Water

The City Council of Freiburg is working on a concept of supplying all public facilities with eco-power.

Freiburg in Southern Germany, on the western edge of the Black Forest, is the hottest and sunniest major city in Germany. And the sun, together with the wind and the waters of small rivers feeding into the nearby Rhine, play a role in supplying the city with electricity.

As of today four per cent of the city’s electricity consumption is derived from renewable energy sources. But the aim is to reach 10 per cent by 2010.

Wind power and bio mass are the major sources of renewable energy, and the city council plans to expand the capacity of wind mills and bio mass plants in the city area where 220,000 people reside.

Solar Energy from Roof Tops

A smaller share of renewable energy is covered by hydro- and solar power. The city council has decided to increase the importance of these two sources in the near future: 1.2 per cent of the city’s power supply should be covered by solar energy in 2010. Today the share is 0.85 per cent. In order to expand the total surface of solar energy systems, the city avails roof areas on public buildings for solar power installations.

More Hydropower

Today, hydro power covers a mere 0.2 per cent of the city’s total power consumption. However, the figure only includes hydro power plants within the urban area and not the big scale hydro power plant son the nearby great river Rhine. Plans are to expand the capacity of hydro power plants in the greater urban area of which 40 is covered by forest.