Trias Territoria for the energy transition in The Hague

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The ‘EnergieRijk Den Haag’ programme is aimed at making sixteen buildings in The Hague completely ‘fossil fuel free’ by 2040. Motion 2040, a consortium of Witteveen+Bos, DWA and Rebel, developed the Trias Territoria, a design philosophy that orders a sustainability assignment into a step-by-step approach that provides direction.

The Trias Territoria requires the energy transition to be approached as follows:

  1. First, investigate any local options for energy generation and energy efficiency gains.
  2. Utilise options in the immediate environment, for instance underground storage.
  3. Purchase sustainable energy to cover the remaining energy need, preferably from a source as close to the consumption site as possible.

In concrete terms, this results in the following plan: first reducing energy consumption and generating energy within individual buildings; followed by energy storage and exchange between the buildings included in the programme via a thermal energy storage network; connecting these buildings to a sustainable district heating network; and finally purchasing green energy. On that basis, variants can be considered that, for instance, place more emphasis on building-based energy efficiency measures through innovation or other solutions. The suggested transition roadmap also offers opportunities for flexible adjustment if certain measures are found to be ineffective along the way. The Trias Territoria design philosophy is effective in situations where space and renewable energy are scarce, as is the case in cities, and utilises all potential an area has to offer.