As part of the large-scale project NEW 4.0, a new energy system will be developed in northern Germany that, by 2035, will provide approximately 4.5 million residents in the federal states of Hamburg and Schleswig-Holstein with wholly 100% renewable energy sources.
Applying Industry 4.0 systems, the project will demonstrate how imbalances in production and consumption can be offset based on renewable energies, including wind power, says Hamburg Marketing GmbH.
As reported, Schleswig-Holstein is an energy supplier with an increasing number of onshore and offshore wind farms, and the city-state of Hamburg is a location for industry and large power consumers. As part of the NEW 4.0 project, the states of Hamburg and Schleswig-Holstein have been merged into one consistent energy region.
The overall objective of this merge is to demonstrate within a European context that the energy transition is indeed feasible: NEW 4.0 will showcase how a region with 4.5 million residents can be supplied with regenerative energy as early as 2035 using 100% safe, affordable, eco-friendly and socially acceptable energy sources that can lead to a reduction in CO2 emissions by 50% to 70%.
Werner Beba, project coordinator of NEW 4.0, explained, “This is the first time that the interplay of different technological approaches, the targeted integration into the energy market and the application of the regulatory framework will be tested in an orchestrated manner as part of this large-scale practical trial, and this is what makes NEW 4.0. both unique and challenging. The findings of this project will contribute to making the necessary transformation of the entire energy system a success.”
“NEW” stands for Norddeutsche Energiewende (North German energy transition), and “4.0” signifies the threshold of the fourth industrial revolution, i.e., the digitization of industry, which will play a key role also with regard to the energy transition as intelligent system networks are developed.
To this end, about 60 regional and transregional partners have formed an “innovation alliance” that aims to overcome the challenges of the energy transition based on integrated technological expertise. The project is supported by the governments of Hamburg and Schleswig-Holstein, as well as by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs (BMWI).
Around EUR 90 million will be invested by the project partners within the next four years, and the BMWI is supporting this showcase project to the tune of EUR 44 million. The overall strategy, some 100 individual projects and 30 demonstrators, has been developed over the course of the project’s three-year preparation phase.
Along this development path, 70% of the region is to be supplied with reliable, renewable electricity as early as 2025. Moreover, NEW 4.0 aims to support the process further based on its sector coupling concept. As part of the project, renewables will be gradually used for heat supply and industrial processes that previously ran on fossil fuels, such as gas.
Hamburg Marketing GmbH says that overall, this large-scale project aims to demonstrate how the full integration of renewable energies can be accomplished even in a region characterized by pronounced, growing imbalances between production and consumption. Because this requires the comprehensive synchronization of these fluctuating measures, the project will use a new approach for integrating and orchestrating all of the stakeholders and components of the production, transport, distribution, storage and consumption stages by means of intelligent network technologies.