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How Paris is increasing energy efficiency

How Paris is increasing energy efficiency


The Climespace district cooling system operates in Paris. France was the first country in the world to have such a network: today it is the biggest in Europe. France’s capital is also home to two other smaller networks in the north-east and south-east of the city.


Climespace’s network in Paris is more than 71 km long and is 60% integrated with the city’s sewage system. This facilitated cost savings on the development and deployment of the network in the city’s infrastructure. Initially cooling is achieved thanks to water from the Seine. Pumps are used to collect the water from the river. Then where necessary, the water is supplied to electrical refrigeration plants.


Scheme of Paris central cooling system. Photo from medium.com


The chilled water is distributed through pipes serving the buildings connected to the system. Each building consumes the amount of cooling energy that it requires. As a result the building “subscriber” eliminates any of the problems that usually arise when you have to set up and maintain refrigerator units, while the city benefits  in a number of ways, including external appearance, noise and power. 



At present more than 500 buildings in Paris are connected to the network, including the Louvre and the Paris Opera.  A five-storey refrigeration plant under Canada Square in Paris generates chilled water and supplies it to buildings in a radius of approximately two kilometres.




Climespace’s district cooling systems operate in a closed circuit with two conduits: the chilled water is supplied to one conduit at a temperature of 5°C, while the other conduit returns the water heated up to 15°C to the generation plant. The district cooling system has three key components: generation plants, a distribution network and energy transfer stations (ETS). 


A five-storey underground installation for cold water outside hides an ordinary concrete slab. Photo from cases.it


The temperature of the water in the Seine fluctuates from 27 degrees in the summer to 4 degrees in the winter. This is more than sufficient in the cold season for cooling. Without requiring the refrigeration plants, the Climespace system covers 75 per cent of the necessary cold during year. In addition the system consumes 35 per cent less electricity than you need from the traditional cooling of buildings. In peak periods the demand for cool water is met by highly efficient electrical chillers and cooling towers. Any equivalent traditional system with standalone cooling assemblies is no competition for Climespace!


Photo from faiteslepleindavenir.com 


The following data list just some of the advantages of the Climespace system:


— 50% increase in energy efficiency;

— 50% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions;

— 80% reduction in use of chemical products;

— 65% reduction in water consumption;

— 90% reduction in cooling agent emissions;

— 35% reduction in electricity consumption. 

— combined with other cooling systems using water, Climespace also helps to reduce the impact of urban heat islands in heat wave by 1-2 °C



To ensure the continuous supply of chilled water and increase safety, specialists control all the main components 24/7. In total 600 energy transfer stations communicate in real time and 102,400 control points are checked. 


Photo from climespace.fr


Climespace’s underground cold storage facilities are concealed beneath some of the best-known sites in Paris, for example, under Tokyo Palace, the Forum des Halles, the Auber Station of the RER transport network and even under the famous department store Galeries Lafayette. 


Photo from usinenouvelle.com


Globally several other cities have also adopted district cooling systems to reduce power consumption. Toronto in Canada uses water from Lake Ontario to cool housing in the business part of the city. In this case the system is integrated with the city’s drinking water supply pipeline. In Dubai’s metro system launched in 2009, central water cooling was used for the first time in the world to reduce the temperature in the stations and on the trains. 


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Header Image: faiteslepleindavenir.com

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