The community consists of 132 municipalities, is extended over a surface of 1.900 km2 and its population is 56.000 inhabitants. The area is characterized by the chestnut trees and terraces, which are present in the major part of the territory and are the sign of the harmony of human activities with a hard but privileged environment. All the slopes farming expresses this close relationship: the chestnut groves and cultures in terraces are the result of this adaptation to environment and still represent today a landscape heritage, which ranks high in Europe.
Some strong actions that indicate the inhabitants’ will to promote sustainable development in their community include the wind energy development scheme, the three opportunity analyses for “green electricity” that took place, the promotion of RES in “Park Labelled” accommodations, as well as the energy audits in local municipalities, tourism structures and local habitats. Furthermore, a general effort has been made in order to incite farmers to stay or to move there, to stimulate eco friendly farming, to develop and promote high quality farming productions, to energize the wood sector and to support and improve forestry.
Regarding the energy sector, the RES development within the national regional Park of the Mounts of Ardèche is already great, leaving, though, huge prospects for further growth in the future. In particular the community’s territory hosts about one hundred regular and small hydro-power plants, which are producing 660 GWh per year that is twice the electricity consumption of the territory. Also, the community elaborated a wind power development guide to influence choices in the matter of wind turbine installations and development. In addition, within the framework of automatic wood energy plants promotion, 17 wood energy plants have been already installed in 15 rural municipalities representing 2.675 KW of installed capacity. Now the Park wishes to reinforce production and local supply through promotion and training actions towards local players. Finally, towards the general promotion of environmental friendly technologies, the community lays emphasis on promoting the use of solar thermal and photovoltaic energies in order to replace electric power lines for isolated sites.
Recommendations on raising local actors' awareness.
- "Energy and climate ambassadors".
- Environmental management system applied to the PNRMA: Park employees themselves built and use a management system (ISO 14001).
- Transportation improvement.
Energy management education: Training of educational partners, identification and suggestion of educational tools.
Energy and climate commission.
Energy and climate web pages.
Energy diagnostics at municipality level.
Energy diagnostics of PNRMA labelled touristic housing.
Energy diagnostics of mineral water factories.
Recommendations on developing transport linked actions
Building and town planning actions
- Eco building field: To develop training, especially for SMEs, networking of companies and actors.
- Integration of energy and climate criteria in the town planning process.
Small district heating integrating wood-energy: Seeking of private - public partnerships to finance the project, study on potential development in few municipalities, networking.
Guide for photovoltaics' development.
Collective investments in renewable energy projects. making people investing collectively in projects by creating the appropriate structures.
Study on the development of micro -hydraulic energy.
- Scenario of 20% energy savings:
We consider that the aim in terms of energy saving is minus 20% in each sector’s energy consumption. This necessary means that strong efforts will have to be done in transportation, tertiary and housing. As villages go on to urbanise their territory, PNRMA will have to convince each municipal Elected to lead very energy consumption restrictive Local Urbanism Program on local authorities communities scale. If they don’t, energy consumption will still increase. When the -20% goal will be reached, RES will cover 78,3% of the territory energy consumption.
Even if PNRMA territory energy consumption is already covered by 78,3% of RES, PNRMA will participate to the national effort in RES production, that is to say, PNRMA goals to produce 8,8% more RES and so 87,1% of the territory energy consumption will be covered by local RES in 2020.
- Scenario of +20% RES:
Efforts will be concentrated on the development of automatic wood fuel heat boiler. The aim is to install 24 MW by 2020, so as to have 30 MW of wood fuel heat boilers installed on PNRMA territory in 2020.
Consequences are that 20.000 m3 per year of wood have to be cut in the forest and 250 ha of forest to be exploited (considering that timber men debit 80 m3/ha).
These data have to be studied by foresters to know if the RES aim is realistic and what does that involve for the wood professionals. For example, wood growth is 500.000 m3 per year.
Considering the “natural” development of wind farms on the territory, we can suppose that 34MW more will be installed.
PNRMA will encourage local authorities communities to participate in a part of the investment in order wind farm provides wealth to the territory.
Solar thermal market increases approximately by 300-350 installations annually. In the next ten years, additional 650 solar water heaters to the existing installation numbers will be added.
Even if solar thermal energy production is multiplied by 3, the RES production consequence for the territory is low as it has no effect on the coverage of territory energy consumption.
French government has an active policy for the next years in terms of photovoltaic. We estimate that photovoltaic energy production will be multiplied by hundred. The effect is only to increase by 0,4% the coverage of RES production in the territory energy consumption!
A part of hydro-electric plants concession contracts will be renewed during the period 2009-2020. As a consequence, some dams will have to undergo works to be standard with new water law. Thus hydro-electricity production will decrease because of reserved flows which are obliged to preserve aquatic ecosystem. We estimate the diminution at about 15% of the present production.
A PNRMA policy to encourage micro-hydro-electricity could stabilise production diminution due to the dam works. PNRMA could support low turbine experimentation with small hydro-electric producers, so as to produce more hydro-electricity with small plants and add 2MW more thanks to micro-hydro-electricity.