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Flanders' energy dilemma: review of the challenges and opportunities of energy storage

Kris Hameeuw (UGent) and Martijn van den Broek (UGent)
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Abstract
Lacking meaningful amounts of traditional resources, Flanders is a prime example of a highly dependent society when fossil (and nuclear) fuels are the sole source of energy supply. Recent attempts to convert to renewable energy sources have had mixed rates of success. Subsidizing schemes resulted in a high percentage of houses being equipped with photovoltaic installations and initiated off-shore wind energy projects. However, recent figures exposed the high total cost of such initiatives. At the same time, failing nuclear reactors revealed the region's vulnerable dependence on aging production units in a centralized energy system. Since some of those units face definite closure, extensive investments to revise the remaining facilities and ensure continuity of operation would be necessary to avoid power outage for the coming decades. Despite initial enthusiasm and a shared sense of urgency, the challenges Flanders is facing on the path towards renewable energy threaten both public acceptance and political determination to continue. Our study aims to outline existing frameworks, identify bottlenecks and the recommendations to overcome them, in terms of technology, legislation as well as government incentives. At present, the activities of so-called ESCOs are for example hindered by an unclear regulatory framework. Furthermore, we will describe the current efforts to introduce a combined implementation of fuel cells and hydrogen storage. Their ability to act as a buffer allows to avoid energy shortage problems due to both insufficient power supply at peak demand from conventional centralized energy distribution, as well as the inherent non-constant energy supply generated by renewable energy sources. Flanders may serve as a textbook example for numerous other regions in Europe and around the world.

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MLA
Hameeuw, Kris, and Martijn van den Broek. “Flanders’ Energy Dilemma: Review of the Challenges and Opportunities of Energy Storage.” 28th International Conference on Efficiency, Cost, Optimization, Simulation and Environmental Impact of Energy Systems, Proceedings, 2015.
APA
Hameeuw, K., & van den Broek, M. (2015). Flanders’ energy dilemma: review of the challenges and opportunities of energy storage. In 28th International Conference on Efficiency, Cost, Optimization, Simulation and Environmental Impact of Energy Systems, Proceedings. Pau, France.
Chicago author-date
Hameeuw, Kris, and Martijn van den Broek. 2015. “Flanders’ Energy Dilemma: Review of the Challenges and Opportunities of Energy Storage.” In 28th International Conference on Efficiency, Cost, Optimization, Simulation and Environmental Impact of Energy Systems, Proceedings.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Hameeuw, Kris, and Martijn van den Broek. 2015. “Flanders’ Energy Dilemma: Review of the Challenges and Opportunities of Energy Storage.” In 28th International Conference on Efficiency, Cost, Optimization, Simulation and Environmental Impact of Energy Systems, Proceedings.
Vancouver
1.
Hameeuw K, van den Broek M. Flanders’ energy dilemma: review of the challenges and opportunities of energy storage. In: 28th International Conference on Efficiency, Cost, Optimization, Simulation and Environmental Impact of Energy Systems, Proceedings. 2015.
IEEE
[1]
K. Hameeuw and M. van den Broek, “Flanders’ energy dilemma: review of the challenges and opportunities of energy storage,” in 28th International Conference on Efficiency, Cost, Optimization, Simulation and Environmental Impact of Energy Systems, Proceedings, Pau, France, 2015.
@inproceedings{6934165,
  abstract     = {{Lacking meaningful amounts of traditional resources, Flanders is a prime example of a highly dependent society when fossil (and nuclear) fuels are the sole source of energy supply. Recent attempts to convert to renewable energy sources have had mixed rates of success. Subsidizing schemes resulted in a high percentage of houses being equipped with photovoltaic installations and initiated off-shore wind energy projects. However, recent figures exposed the high total cost of such initiatives. At the same time, failing nuclear reactors revealed the region's vulnerable dependence on aging production units in a centralized energy system. Since some of those units face definite closure, extensive investments to revise the remaining facilities and ensure continuity of operation would be necessary to avoid power outage for the coming decades. Despite initial enthusiasm and a shared sense of urgency, the challenges Flanders is facing on the path towards renewable energy threaten both public acceptance and political determination to continue. Our study aims to outline existing frameworks, identify bottlenecks and the recommendations to overcome them, in terms of technology, legislation as well as government incentives. At present, the activities of so-called ESCOs are for example hindered by an unclear regulatory framework. Furthermore, we will describe the current efforts to introduce a combined implementation of fuel cells and hydrogen storage. Their ability to act as a buffer allows to avoid energy shortage problems due to both insufficient power supply at peak demand from conventional centralized energy distribution, as well as the inherent non-constant energy supply generated by renewable energy sources. Flanders may serve as a textbook example for numerous other regions in Europe and around the world.}},
  author       = {{Hameeuw, Kris and van den Broek, Martijn}},
  booktitle    = {{28th International Conference on Efficiency, Cost, Optimization, Simulation and Environmental Impact of Energy Systems, Proceedings}},
  isbn         = {{978-2-9555539-0-9}},
  language     = {{eng}},
  location     = {{Pau, France}},
  pages        = {{10}},
  title        = {{Flanders' energy dilemma: review of the challenges and opportunities of energy storage}},
  year         = {{2015}},
}