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Energy Working Group

The Energy Working Group of Transition Town Vallei already exists since three years. The group consists of six to ten active members from Wageningen and sometimes people interested in energy from Ede or Veenendaal. Half of the members have their own solar panels and/or solarboiler and they want to do more to save energy and motivate others to do so as well. They also want to encourage wind power and support the municipality in becoming climate neutral through solar panels. The focus of our activities is on energy saving on the household level and the use of renewable energy. It is in this area that we want to help the citizens of Wageningen.

Solar Energy

Buying solar panels is becoming cheaper and thereby more promising . Last year Wageningen became the Dutch  Solar City. We have the most solar panels per inhabitant (end of 2013 a total of 9700 solar panels). This is due to the stimulating activities of the foundation Solar Energy Wageningen, which was founded in 2011. Transition Towns is a member of the supervisory committee (think tank). The aim of the foundation is to reach two million kWh in 2014 , the year that project will have to stop, due to project money running out. Because businesses that use a lot of electricity pay less energy tax ( the more you consume the less you pay, shame), the payback period for solar is too long for companies. As a result thereof the end goal has not yet been met. We have reached 85 % .

This year the promotion Sunny Wageningen was launched aimed at businesses and citizens who want to order solar panels. In 2012, the action of Atama was a great success for the citizens. In 2013, the residents can request quotes themselves. This is much more difficult but nevertheless orders are still coming in. If your neighbours have solar panels you also want them. That’s how it works.

In April 2014  there will be a special Solar City Wageningen evening organised.

Solar energy on the roof of your neighbour

When you do not have a roof that is fit for solar panels or everything is already full and you want to help your neighbours or friends to get solar energy, you can pay for their panels. In a contract, you then agree that they repay you this loan based on the average monthly solar energy yield. In the leaflet (Zon op buur) this is briefly explained. With the calculating file (rekenfile zonnepanelen), you can enter your own numbers and see when you will have regained the investment. Furthermore, a model solar lease agreement (Overeenkomst huurkoop zonnepanelen) can be found, which you can sign with your neighbour.

Wageningen carbon neutral by 2030

Since 2010 the Energy Working Group participated in the activities for a climate neutral Wageningen. In October 2013 an evening was organized to report on the progress of Wageningen carbon neutral. A summary was given on the success of sustainable building, energy saving in households, solar- and wind energy, mobility and reducing meat consumption (which makes up almost 50% of the CO2 emissions of Wageningen). Within the municipality we are well on track, but still a lot needs to be done. The beautiful plans for energy saving and renovation  in De Hoef, Tarthorst and Roghorst are promising, but expensive. In practice, not a lot has been saved so far. The entire report (verslag) can be viewed or downloaded.

Wind Energy

Transition Town Valley supports the initiative to realize wind energy in Wageningen. With wind we can already generate 50% of the energy we use in a durable way. Windmills are therefore inevitable. In October the city council has approved windmills in the harbour – floodplains. At present, studies are undertaken by SBB and the Wind Energy Foundation Wageningen to see whether this would be promising. Due to the safety distance to the port and houses, it can mean that only two or three wind turbines can be built. Then the question is whether the business case is still valuable. You can download the latest wind energy newsletter here (nieuwsbrief windenergie).

Mill Market and Flexitarier Campaign

Every year Transition Town Vallei participates in the Mill Market. Focus of this year’s market was solar- and wind energy. Also the food quiz (voedselquiz) was done again to find out how much energy is needed for the production of food, from farm to fork, which is a lot. In total it amounts to a quarter of all the energy we use per person. Meat is a major user of energy, then dairy, milk and cheese, then fish, then processed foods or vegetables flown in. The least energy is produced by fruits and vegetables of the season. The municipality therefore started the  flexitarier campaign: eat at least half of the week, something other than meat or fish. There are more and more tasty substitutes available.

Vallei Energie

Transition Towns supports our own sustainable energy company ValleiEnergie. If you become a member you can purchase electricity  for a reduced price from Greenchoice. You will also be invited to attend meetings on regional energy input, such as the WKK Wageningen, which is perhaps going to run on biogas or wood as well as on initiatives for collective wood boilers as in De Hoef.

With only € 24 a year you can support regional sustainable energy.

Participating in the Working Group?

Of course you can join. We meet once a month to prepare activities. For information and registration email to or call Wim Haver 06-16484728.