01 Sep 2020


Transformation of existing urban district heating and cooling systems from fossil to renewable energy sources


September 2020 – August 2023


RES-DHC stands for a wider introduction of Renewable Energy Sources (RES) in the District Heating and Cooling (DHC) sector. The RES-DHC project addresses the manifold market uptake challenges related to the transformation of DHC systems to higher shares of RES.

The main objective of the RES-DHC project is to support the transformation of existing urban DHC systems to RES in six participating regions and thereby to derive – from these practical cases – technical and organizational solutions for such transformation processes.

RES-DHC will develop the solutions and instruments needed to implement the EU Renewable Energy Directive II (2018/2001), which requires a yearly increase of RES in DHC by 1 %. The project will assist in the transformation of existing urban DHC systems in six countries: Germany, Austria, Italy, Poland, France and Switzerland.


  • Leaflet about RES-DHC was produced in 7 languages to present the project and to communicate the project objectives and outputs through simple and clear messages
  • Survey that covers district heating and cooling networks in the European Union and addresses relevant aspects impacting renewable energy sources in district heating and cooling systems (RES-DHC) at the EU level. The EU survey identifies 7 countries outside the consortium and regional survey countries with high potential for RES DHC
  • The final toolbox - a suitable tool that can help one to find a way to decarbonize DHC, which is available online and free of charge. 

Planned Activities:

  • Project brochure will highlight project outcomes

  • 2 policy workshops will be held on topics:

    • Sector integration

    • Regulatory and financial frameworks for public authorities and investors

  • Public webinar at the EU level will be organised for transferring know-how


The 15 project partners from 8 countries are:

  • Solites – Steinbeis Research Institute for Solar and Sustainable Thermal Energy Systems (Germany)
  • German District Heating Association AGFW (Germany)
  • HIR Hamburg Institut Research gGmbH (Germany)
  • City of Graz – Environmental Department (Austria)
  • Energie Graz GmbH & Co. KG (Austria)
  • AEE – Institute for Sustainable Technologies (Austria)
  • Iren SpA (Italia)
  • Ambiente Italia s.r.l. (Italia)
  • Szczecinska Energetyka Cieplna Sp. z o.o. (SEC) (Poland)
  • Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Energy Environment Agency (AURA-EE) (France)
  • Commissariat à l’Energie Atomique et Aux Energies Alternatives (CEA INES) (France)
  • Planair SA (Switzerland)
  • Verenum AG (Switzerland)
  • PlanEnergi Fond (Denmark
  • Euroheat & Power (Belgium)


Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme