Nuon, Heineken Netherlands, the municipalities of Rotterdam and Leiden, Warmtebedrijf Rotterdam (Rotterdam Heat Supply) and the province of Zuid-Holland have taken an important intermediary step towards the completion of the ‘Leiden Region Heat Supply’ project. The six parties signed a Declaration of Intent on 4 April 2016.

This will bring the construction of the 43-kilometre underground pipeline one step closer. The pipeline will transport residual heat derived from industrial applications from the port of Rotterdam to Leiden via an eastern route. After completion of this heat pipeline, the residual heat will be used to heat the city of Leiden and the surrounding areas. This system will provide the Heineken brewery in Zoeterwoude with steam for its brewing processes, among others, in lieu of the natural gas the company currently uses to generate heat. The pipeline will be part of an even larger district heating network that is still to be completed in the province of Zuid-Holland. The new pipeline will enable allow an estimated 50 million m3 of natural gas to be saved on an annual basis.

Open heat net

In the future, other municipalities and business enterprises along the pipeline – such as greenhouse horticulture firms – will be able to benefit from this heat supply, too. In addition to this, the system also offers opportunities for other sources of heat, such as geothermal heat or biomass. Provincial Executive member Han Weber: ‘This is an important step towards the realisation of an open heat network in Zuid-Holland, the heat hub. The Provincial Authorities are primarily identifying opportunities for expansion. We are engaged in involving more suppliers of sustainable heat sources, such as geothermal heart and biomass, and more customers, such as the Oostland greenhouse horticulture region. This will result in a heat infrastructure that serves a broad interest.’

Due to the availability of residual heat from industrial sources, which would otherwise be lost, less natural gas will be used in the Leiden region in the future. That will result in a considerable reduction in CO2, estimated at 90,000 tons a year. A reduction in CO2 emissions like this is consistent with the sustainability objectives of all parties involved.

Heat pump

With the signing of the Declaration of Intent, the six parties laid a solid foundation for close collaboration. From here onwards, the parties will actually proceed with the construction of the pipeline and the supply of heat. A new type of heat pump will be developed in order to make it suitable for use at the Heineken brewery. Additionally, investigations are being conducted into the best possible solutions for the construction of the pipeline and the best integration of the underground pipeline in the area.

Watch the video about this unique project here (Dutch spoken).

Source/photo: Programmabureau Warmte Koude Zuid-Holland.