Regional energy concept FrankfurtRheinMain
"FrankfurtRheinMain – 100 % energy-efficient and renewable"
This is the stated goal of the City of Frankfurt am Main and the Regional Authority FrankfurtRheinMain. With joined forces they strive to turn the entire region into a climate-neutral society by 2050. An ambitious task that requires the cooperation of various actors on all levels. The regional energy concept is the tool to organize this cooperation on the regional level.
After having established a regional data base and including experts through a participation phase (see below), the actual concept will now be developed. It will explain how the proposed strategies and measures that evolved during the participation phase, can contribute to the energy transition in the region. Thereby, regional actors need to agree on goals and commit themselves. Realized measures shall serve as examples for further projects in the region.
The results of the participation phase were compiled in a work report [German PDF: 8 MB] and a brochure [German PDF: 2,1 MB]. Together with the already collected data base, they form the scaffold for the concept development.
The process of developing the regional energy concept is split into three phases. The current formulation of the concept was preceded by the compilation of a regional data base and the participation phase:
Phase 1 – Regional data base
Starting in 2013, city and region created the first elements for the regional energy concept:
Phase 2 – participation phase
The transformation of a major city and region into a society which is "100% supplied by efficient and renewable energy" can only succeed in close cooperation with municipalities, local organizations and businesses. At the beginning of the participation phase, five strategic fields of actions were defined and worked on in so called strategy groups. These were:
- Energy supply
- Settlement / living
- Added value
In order to form a strategy group for each field, regional institutions and individual persons with technical competence were invited to contribute. This included businesses, municipal/district administration employees, associations, societies, NGOs, scientists, and already existing organizational structures and networks. In total, about 100 institutions with about 150 experts participated in the process. Every strategy group met six times over the period of about a year. In moderated meetings, joint goals and requirements were discussed and compiled.
Members of strategy groups at a meeting
The strategies and measures developed in the groups were based on existing policy goals for 2050 [PDF: 567 KB]. In addition, the actors formulated project-related framework conditions for the regional, state, federal, and EU level which were deemed helpful or necessary for the implementation of the proposed measures.
The development of the regional energy concept FrankfurtRheinMain occurs before the background of already existing framework conditions in Hesse and the region:
Framework conditions for the regional energy concept
The federal state of Hesse has the goal of covering electricity and heat consumption completely with renewable energies by 2050. In addition, by 2050 the greenhouse gas emissions are to be reduced by at least 90% below 1990 levels. In order to find out more, go to the section political framework conditions in Hesse.
City of Frankfurt am Main
The City of Frankfurt am Main has developed a master plan which shows how the energy supply of Frankfurt can be transitioned to the efficient use of 100% renewable energies by 2050. The project is supported by the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety as part of the "Master plan 100% Climate Protection". The goals of Frankfurt can only be accomplished in cooperation with the region.
Within the FrankfurtRheinMain region already numerous energy policy targets were passed at the level of districts, cities, and municipalities. Many municipalities also accepted obligations by joining pacts, such as the Climate Pact, Convent of Mayors, and 100 Municipalities for Climate Protection. No joint target has been decided upon for the region as a whole. Achieving the ambitious goals requires innovative approaches and business models as well as new partnerships in the region.
Why is the Regional Authority creating the regional energy concept?
Significance of the region
On the regional level, energy concepts serve to integrate activities "from top" (EU, federal, and state level) and "from below" (municipalities). They are an important supplement to municipal concepts, since the possibilities of individual regional actors and municipalities across borders are only limited.
In the FrankfurtRheinMain region, the Regional Authority FrankfurtRheinMain controls and coordinates the development. Two instruments are available in the areas of energy and climate protection. These are formal planning and informal activities (such as the regional energy concept).
Formal planning refers to the elements that impact the spatial planning of the energy transition: the regional preparatory land-use plan (RegFNP) specifies goals and principles of land planning and integrates the interests of technical plans as well as municipal development interests with large-scale effect on our plan area.
The Regional Assembly South Hesse and the Authority Chamber of the Regional Authority have decided on the development of an objective sub-plan on renewable energies. This sub-plan replaces the goals and plan representations made in the currently valid regional preparatory land-use plan on the topic of energy. The objective sub-plan on renewable energy will mainly formulate areas of precedence for wind energy as well as goals and principles for other renewable energies. Non-area-relevant types of renewable energies and other aspects of an energy transition, such as energy savings and efficiency, can hardly be controlled by formal planning tools.
Regional energy concept
The regional energy concept FrankfurtRheinMain is supposed to complement the formal planning and focus in particular on the cooperation of public authorities, business, associations, authorities, unions etc.
The work on the regional energy concept is designed in such a way that current actions are not adversely affected during the concept development. Projects were already realized during the development of the first concept components in 2013, for instance the practical guidelines and the energy profiles. This approach will continue in the future.