Question: How expensive is a widespread district heating network for, say, 100,000 inhabitants?

Just curious, but how expensive is a widespread district heating network (obviously, besides the capital costs of the thermal plant itself) for a, say, 100,000 inhabitants?

Alessandro De Mida

The best figure I have come across was in a paper published by the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change in 2009. This says that the cost of installing a district heating network to provide heat to 270,000 residents (so equivalent to the one operating in Vienna) would cost around £1.5 billion, that is, €1.7 billion or $2.4 billion (see DECC: The Potential and Cost of District Heating Networks: A report to the Department of Energy and Climate Change).

Stephen Tindale


1 Comment

  1. Alessandro De Maida

    Thanks for your answer, mr. Tindale

    And what about district cooling in hot periods? During summers, that hot water besides some personal hot water use is pratically useless, unless we decided to use it to produce cooling/refrigeration through absorption heat pumps – the network construction cost is already completed and does need no other added costs, clearly besides the cost of absorption heat pumps themself; moreover, I guess that absorption heat pumps can be used even in winter to produce heat with a COP > 1 and for winter cooling for particular uses where needed (commercial or industrial applications)

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