The idea of Vilnius to bring together modern energy signatories under one roof has paid off


Nuotr. Sauliaus Žiūros

As global energy consumption rises, the decision of Vilnius to establish sustainable energy platform called Intelligent Energy Lab (IEL) immediately proved to be very valuable: the clean and sustainable energy platform brought together more than 50 business, science and social partners in the first year and has implemented 13 sustainable energy initiatives and 7 projects with 3 more projects being under development.

Aiming to become climate neutral, Vilnius increases energy efficiency, promotes circular economy, the development of renewable resources, research, and the opening and exchange of energy data.

“A year ago, we chose to move towards a modern ecosystem and become an example for other cities with our energy sustainability. The decision to establish an open platform for generating and implementing smart energy ideas was very good as we have already implemented excellent innovations in energy sustainability,” says Vilnius Mayor Remigijus Šimašius.

The year was extremely productive for the IEL platform, which takes care of renewable and clean energy in Vilnius. The platform has implemented various projects ranging from the search for alternative heat production methods, development of low temperature zones in Vilnius integrated centralized heating system, and air quality measurement to optimization of municipal building energy consumption using digital twin technology.

“The future of Vilnius, the National Energy Independence Strategy, the European Green Deal and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals are important to us all. We take care of almost 220 thousand households and organizations in the capital 24/7, so it is a great honour and obligation for us to lead the capital towards the status of a climate-neutral city,” says Gerimantas Bakanas, General Manager of Vilnius Heat Networks, which coordinates the IEL platform.

According to G. Bakanas, every idea developed by Intelligent Energy Lab is a step closer to consistent and balanced renewal and optimization of district heating systems, ensuring efficient heat consumption, reliable, economically attractive supply and production, and cheaper heat for the customer. Launched a year ago, the platform is an opportunity to introduce modern and environmentally friendly technologies using local and renewable energy sources, thus reducing fossil fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

“It is even hard to believe that it is possible to go so far towards sustainable energy in a year. I can confidently say that Vilnius energy sector will become even smarter as we are already inviting foreign partners to join the platform. We will organize an international hackathon together with the Energy Conference,” says Eglė Radvilė, the project manager of Intelligent Energy Lab, about the nearby plans.

Intelligent Energy Lab fields include lower temperature networks, waste heat, renewable energy sources, centralized cooling, smart technologies, green data, green transport, and circular economy.

The most significant projects implemented by the IEL in Vilnius last year: optimization of building at the address Konstitucijos pr. 3 heating, ventilation and air conditioning system, drones in the city, Power-to-Heat project, development of low temperature zones in Vilnius integrated centralized heating system, pilot air quality measurement project, concept of green data architecture in Vilnius, Ignitis class.