New energy in Archipel and Willemspark

How can we become greener?

Our charming neighbourhood largely contains houses built between 1880 and 1910. Many of these houses have high ceilings, walls that are one brick thick, large, single-paned windows … and badly insulated floors and roofs.

Our neighbourhood has facades of historical interest protected by the Historic Heritage law. They are difficult to insulate. Energy costs for individual and business consumers have to be reduced. At the same time, we feel that we, as a community, also have a responsibility for reducing excessive production of CO2 in the atmosphere around us.

Some people in the neighbourhood with a mutual interest in sustainable energy have come together. Marjan Teesing, who just started writing a column in the Archipel/Willemspark community newspaper, talks about her first forays into understanding the complicated world of sustainability and energy.  An investigation into subsidies for solar panels on the roof of her house triggered a thorough study of the subject. And so she entered the fascinating world of windmills/windturbines, solar panels, natural warmth of the earth, energy from the sea, biomass energy, etc. She then wondered what might be the best technology for our neighbourhood. So she studied The Hague City Council’s rules and regulations on public spaces. She spread the word and found neighbours who are already working in various areas related to the environment. This rapidly growing group of enthusiastic people wants to participate and contribute to an initiative to benefit of our environment.

There are other growing movements in different towns and communities in the Netherlands, some of which have already taken up the challenge successfully. For example, Vogelwijk Energiek, a cooperative of households in The Hague, together with Eneco, blew new life into a dismantled wind turbine at Zuiderstrand. All participating households now profit from the communal energy it produces.

A very interesting website worth a visit is the Delft University of Technology’s Centre for Sustainable Urban Areas (in English) at www.tudelft.nl.

If you would like to join us or would like more information please contact:

marjan@archipelwillemspark.nl 

Other interesting websites:

thuis.eneco.nl

www.vogelwijkenergiek.nl

www.milieucentraal.nl

www.nederlandkrijgtnieuweenergie.nl

www.texelenergie.nl

www.haagsmilieucentrum.nl

Based on Marjan Teesing’s article in the February issue of the A&W community newspaper (page 7)
and translated by Marjan Bloem