As of 2026, it will be forbidden in the Netherlands to install a new gas-based space heater/boiler. Instead, choosing from one of the following three options will be obliged:
1. hybrid heat pump
2. electrical heat pump
3. district heating
Note that this new rule only applies for cases where an old installation needs to be replaced by a new one.
Next year, Vattenfall will bring a new ‘plug-and-play’ high-temperature heat pump onto the market, that is suitable for older homes, eliminating the need to replace conventional radiators with an expensive floor heating. ‘Plug-and-play’ meaning: gas heater out, electric heat pump in. Temperatures: 70-90 C, power 6 kW base, 11 kW peak. The project is a joint-venture between Swedish Vattenfall, Dutch installer Feenstra, German hybrid heating manufacturer SOLVIS and the Japanese DENSO components and heat pump company. The hope is that over the entire season, a COP-value of 3 can be achieved.
The real advantage is that very high investments can be postponed. Vattenfall estimates that 2.8 million Dutch homes (out of 7 million in total) are suitable for this natural gas-free space heating solution. Another advantage is that the solution is available NOW, rather than having to wait for district heating or hydrogen. The medium in the thermodynamic cycle is CO2. The heat pump is rather bulky to accommodate a large water buffer, with stratified storage. The strategy is to slowly heat the storage during the day. When the inhabitants come home in the evening, the house can be warmed rapidly.
The heat pump is the result of 3 years R&D between Vattenfall and Feenstra and implemented in 20 test homes in Heemskerk. The winter of 2020-2021 had fairly cold days, but no complaints were registered.
[volkskrant.nl] – Vattenfall komt met warmtepomp voor oude woningen
[feenstra.com] – Van het aardgas af zonder ingrijpende verbouwing
[vattenfall.com] – Bestaande woningbouw eenvoudig aardgasvrij
[wattisduurzaam.nl] – Plug and play-warmtepomp voor ‘moeilijke’ huizen productierijp
There are too many sustainable projects in the Netherlands to keep track off, nevertheless, this one is singled out for 2 reasons:
1. application of PVT-panels
2. affordable for lower incomes
(There is a third reason that doesn’t apply to you, namely that this project is less than an hour walk from yours faithfully’s own home, so worthy of a detour for the daily self-imposed 10,000-step stroll)
The project scope: 25 energy neutral social housing rental homes. Delivery March 8, 2021. Excellent thermal isolation. Part of the building materials were recycled from the old torn-down homes. The basic rent: €630,- for 2- or €675,- for 3-bedrooms, which is low. Additionally, there is an energieprestatievergoeding (EPV) of about €105-125/month, a sort of compensation for the landlord and his energy investments. In return, the tenant hardly has an energy bill left.
The downside is that comfort is reduced. It takes 24 hours to bring the home at a temperature of 21 C. The heat pump capacity is low. In the rare case of freezing weather, inefficient additional heating is done with filaments. Electricity and heat are generated with PVT-panels.
[ed.nl] – Duurzaam wonen aan Michiel de Ruyterstraat in Aalst is ook even wennen
[mijn-thuis.nl] – Michiel de Ruyterstraat, Aalst-Waalre
[rvo.nl] – Energieprestatievergoeding (EPV)
[planviewer.nl] – Project plan
[Google Maps] – Michiel de Ruyterstraat, Aalst
[Google Streetview] – Shows the situation before the renovation
The Netherlands are an extremely water-rich country, with more than 5,000 km navigable waterways/canals. They come with more than 10,000 km quay walls (Dutch: kademuren).
Many of them made from steel.
Steel is a very good thermal conductor, much better than soil. Here is the idea: mount steel pipes to the steel quay walls and ensure good thermal conductivity. Pump a suitable fluid through the pipe-network and use it to extract heat from the canal and use it as input to heat pumps. The energy harvesting potential is considerable. Estimated COP values: up to 5-6 and can be used for both heating and cooling. Power: 500 Watt/m2. The quay walls are existing infrastructure and can be upgraded at relatively low cost.
[bouwwereld.nl] – Energie winnen uit stalen damwanden
[google maps] – De Zweth
[cruxbv.nl] – Contractor Crux BV
[sps-energie.de] – German partner and patentholder
[energie-damwanden.nl] – Gooimeer BV produces quay wall in license