Solutions on BABLE are expert-curated proposals for efficiently implementable Smart City projects. Each Solution contains a list of benefits and a list of functions needed to achieve these benefits, as well as information on the business model, driving factors, relevant legal regulations, advices from experts and links to relevant use-cases and products.
Energy Efficient Retrofitting of Buildings
Improving energy efficiency of the building stock in a city needs strategic and long-term thinking. Complex ownership structures, market barriers, diversity of building typologies, consumer preferences and multiple stakeholders involved in the construction and retrofitting of a building makes energy efficient buildings a challenge even with the advanced technological developments. However, to realise positive energy districts and reach the ambitious climate goals set forward by cities, zero and positive energy buildings play a critical role. A variety of initiatives worldwide have proven that while a complex challenge, Energy Efficient Retrofitting of buildings is possible and has huge impact towards greener and more resilient cities. Problems to be solved Energy loss in buildings Use of Inadequate materials Energy poverty Transition from fossil fuels Make technologies affordable Energy demand in buildings
Peer to Peer Energy Trading
The goal of peer-to-peer (P2P) energy trading is to make renewable energy more accessible, while empowering consumers to make better use of their energy resources. It works by creating an online marketplace where prosumers who produce their own electricity through distributed energy resources (also called self-consumers) and consumers can trade electricity at an agreed upon price. P2P trading helps the grid by lowering reserve requirements, providing ancillary services, and reducing peak demand, while also saving citizens money on their electric bills. Trading power locally eliminates most transmission costs and allows prosumers to sell energy at a greater profit than if it were sold back to the grid, as is currently the standard. By limiting utility involvement in transactions, P2P models enable buyers to save costs and sellers to make greater profit. They also empower customers to choose where their electricity is sourced from. Problems to be solved Growing energy consumption High cost of energy High transmission and infrastructure costs Rising demand for renewables Limited energy access to consumers in mini-grid set-ups
Urban Air Quality Platform
For the last decade, Urban Air Quality Platforms (UAQPs) have been an important tool for collecting, processing and visualising hyperlocal data about urban emissions. Similarly, UAQPs are generally open for access providing transparency and air pollution awareness. Data can be provisioned either by dispersed sensors across the city or through satellite imagery. The sensors collecting the data can be installed either by an operator (e.g. the municipality) or on private property. The mandatory and additional functions of the system are shown below. The produced impact of UAQPs varies depending on the functions implemented. The achievable benefits of a system containing all additional functions below are shown as potential benefits, whereas the general benefits can be reached by implementing the mandatory functions only.
Smart Home System
A smart gateway, as an essential part of the system, connects the smart home with the outside world. This allows the mobile control of devices in the house from remote places, often through smartphones and microcontrollers. External systems and services can be used for better energy usage regulation. Furthermore, the system can be connected to the smart grid as well as electric charging infrastructure to enable better energy efficiency and billing plans, for example, according to peak-time energy consumption or renewable energy content. ( European Commission, 2019 ) Problems to be solved Inefficiency Insecurity Lack of comfort Dependency of elderly people High energy costs Energy inefficiency is a huge problem in residential buildings. In Europe, 26% of the total final energy consumption is consumed in private homes. Smart Home Systems can reduce energy losses and increase the overall security and comfort of occupants while specifically improving the independence of elderly people. There are several solutions in the context of Smart Home Systems to solve these problems. ( Eurostat, 2018 ) Some marketable outcomes that Smart Home Systems provide are: Subscription-based services that can generate a constant stream of income Big target groups : It can be sold to hospitals and homes for elderly and disabled people, but also for those willing to increase their comfort in a smart home environment The gateways can anonymise and provide data to data platforms, to implement effective analytics and long-term improvement as well as product design. The data can be charged, and the analytic services and their results can also be seen as marketable outcomes.
Municipal Energy Saving Systems
For over a decade, European municipalities have been establishing initiatives, strategies and action plans to increase the energy efficiency of private and communal infrastructure. Municipalities of EU member states, enforced by the EU Directive on energy efficiency, must collaboratively work to ensure that by 2020 and 2030, an energy efficiency of 20% and of 32.5% are met, respectively. Initiatives, such as the Covenant of Mayors, have been launched to foster commitment towards energy and climate targets. Signatories voluntarily agreed to increase energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy sources. To achieve this, participating municipalities drafted and submitted a Sustainability Energy Action Plan (SEAP), defining their energy saving and climate measures. More than 6000 municipalities have developed and approved a SEAP since 2008; however, when compared to the total number of municipalities across Europe, it proves that there is still a long way to go. It has been identified that a municipality's building stock represents the single largest potential for energy savings. It is also expected that more than two-thirds of the world population will live in urban areas by 2050. Therefore, this solution aims to ease the conception and implementation of municipal energy saving measures. Problems to be solved Fossil fuel consumption Carbon emissions Detrimental urban air quality Wasted energy Unreliable energy supply Low energy monitoring
Local Energy System
Local energy systems are effectively controlled by local shareholders or members, generally value rather than profit driven, involved in distributed generation and in performing activities of a distribution system operator, supplier or aggregator at local level, including across borders. The term encompasses both the organisational and technological elements required. The implementation of a local energy system shifts the energy production from a centralised system to a decentralised system. In a local energy system, the energy is produced close to where it will be used, in contrast to a centralised energy production system or a national grid where the production is centralised. The local generation reduces the transmission losses and is able to adapt to the local needs. The system includes the generation, the storage and the consumption of energy. To optimise the energy consumption, a visualization of the consumption or controlled energy consumption is possible. Local energy systems can also promote civic engagement, allowing people to actively participate in energy related decision-making. And as renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar, are usually more decentralised than traditional power sources, decentralised local energy systems offer greater opportunity to increase usage of low carbon energy sources. Problems to be solved Transmission losses Reliance on fossil fuels Energy management Carbon Emissions Reliance on distant energy sources Local energy distribution Energy price competition