Güssing, Austria

Güssing, Austria

  • Target: 100% renewable energy self-sufficiency.
  • Status: Achieved
  • RES: Biomass cogeneration and district heating system.
  • Implementation: Güssing is a small town in Austria, near the Hungarian border. Years ago, the town was struggling to pay for energy costs, today it is a trendsetter in the production renewable energies, particular in biomass gasification technology. Güssing implemented a renewable energy plan as part of an overall regional economic development and re-development plan. It started with a energy efficiency program in 1990, the town laid out plans to keep jobs and money in the area by taking ownership of their energy usage and production. The municipality would switch all the streetlights to LED and retrofit all the public buildings with new windows and insulation over a decade. The town also decided to stop using power produced by fossil fuels. Güssing’s agricultural and forestry provided the organic material for fuelling the community operated biomass district heating grids and in 2001, it began producing electricity and biogas in the world’s first functioning FICFB (Fast Internally Circulating Fluidized Bed) plant. Güssing’s success has let the way for the entire region of Burgenland to follow as energy prosumers. In 2013, the entire region produced enough locally produced electricity to cover demand. Güssing itself has become a tourist attraction for the renewable energy field, experiencing several hundred ecotourists a year. There have also been a substantial amount of businesses being established in, or have moved to, the region, resulting in an increase of local employment. The town now has 60 new companies, 1,500 new jobs, and annual revenues of $17 million due to energy sales. Güssing’s successes also attracted R&D, in particular was the foundation of the European Center for Renewable Energy founded in 1996 and remains central to Güssing's renewable energy industry today.
  • Population: 3,660 (2016)
  • Area: 49.31 km2 (19.04 sq mi)
  • Link: https://pocacito.eu/sites/default/files/ModelGüssing_Güssing.pdf
Güssing, Austria

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