In 2016, the North Veluwe region has developed a roadmap for becoming climate-neutral. The spearheads of their approach were the integration of sustainable energy solutions in the region and measures to boost the regional energy production. It was very clear from the start that a large-scale energy production would yield excellent results in a relatively short term. The region has asked us to undertake an intensive consultation process with the stakeholders to develop a set of viable projects. In cooperation with the municipalities of Elburg, Ermelo, Nunspeet, Olderbroek and Putten, we have engaged in a broad process that resulted in the delivery of detailed reports per municipality. The underlying wish was to be able to raise societal support directly.
By considering a mix of different energy sources for 2050, we have been able to provide better insight in what the energy transition entails. Our research has also shown how many wind turbines, solar farms as well as how much biomass will be necessary in the future. The Energy Transition Atlas displays the potential of the area based on current regulations and legislation. These analyses offer considerable input for the negotiation process with the stakeholders.
In the course of two workshops on energy and landscape we discuss how much energy will be needed as well as how much potential there is in the region with the stakeholders. Under the guidance of H+N+S Landscape Architects, the stakeholders evaluate different options for a large-scale sustainable energy production. The local identity and the landscape capacity are always at the centre. This sets the basis for win-win developments, such as the construction of solar farms by land owners for maintenance of their own land, or fostering the growth of new vegetation in solar fields.
Being a pioneer for the Regional Energy Strategy (RES), the North Veluwe region has gained a portfolio of promising projects, that include detailed advice on their implementation and necessary organisation. The executive board of the municipality (college B&W) and the city council have also been involved in the starting and final phases with a series of work sessions. They are well aware of the urgency of this task and are ready to take action based on our research. The societal support has increased considerably due to a large group of stakeholders and many visitors attending the evening information sessions for residents. We have successfully set a steady framework for the execution of these projects.