On November 22th 2023, e-SAFE enthusiastically participated in the conference "The Role of Energy Storage in Energy Community: Assessing Readiness, Needs, and Regulations through ECHO & BEST-Storage projects". 

The conference, organized by the European Association for the Storage of Energy (EASE), featured presentations from key players in the energy storage sector. The event provided invaluable insights to e-SAFE, inspiring its further commitment to contribute to the deep renovation of the EU building stock while addressing energy and seismic efficiency. 

Understanding Energy Storage and its Role 

The conference commenced with an introduction by Giulia Malafarina from EHPA, followed by Margareta Roncevic's opening statement on Thermal Energy Storage (TES) solutions. EASE, a leading association representing stakeholders across the energy storage value chain, emphasized the importance of considering various energy storage technologies. 

In this context, thermal energy storage, a focus of the e-SAFE project, was explored, encompassing principles such as sensible heat storage (SHS), latent heat storage (LHS), and thermochemical heat storage (TCS). The applications of thermal energy storage in residential, commercial, and district heating, as well as waste heat recovery in industries, were highlighted. 

Legal Pathways and EU Emission Reduction Targets 

Karla Zambrano González's presentation delved into the legal aspects of deep decarbonization in the EU, emphasizing the need for international collaboration to address the climate emergency. The pyramid of domestic law, European law, and international law was discussed, with a focus on key international agreements like the Paris Agreement. The ambitious "fit for 55" targets set by the EU were presented as a driving force for comprehensive regulatory frameworks. 

Democratizing Thermal Energy with Community Heating & Cooling 

Felix Kriedemann from REScoop emphasized the democratization of thermal energy through Community Heating & Cooling (CH&C). The EU regulatory framework for energy communities, established in 2013, recognizes the pivotal role of citizens in energy transition projects. 

Innovative Solutions: ECHO and BEST-Storage Projects 

Representatives from the ECHO and BEST-Storage projects, Éfren Giulló Sansano and Pavol Bodiš, showcased the groundbreaking ECHO TES system and Newton Energy Solutions, respectively. The ECHO tes system's adaptability, modularity, and flexibility were highlighted, showcasing its ability to shift electricity loads and provide flexibility energy services. BEST-Storage project on the other hand, addresses a critical aspect of energy consumption, emphasizing the significance of reducing peak loads and efficiently managing energy demand. By focusing on strategies that shift electricity usage from high-demand to low-demand periods, BEST-Storage aims not only to save energy but also to minimize costs associated with energy consumption. 

e-SAFE's Role in the Energy Landscape 

The participation in this conference was extremely stimulating. e-SAFE project's attendance strengthened our consortium’s commitment to contributing to a resilient, carbon-neutral, and secure energy system for the European Union. As buildings continue to play a substantial role in energy consumption and environmental impact, the innovative solutions presented by the e-SAFE project signify a significant step toward a sustainable future. 

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