The Bosveld/Hoogveld industrial estate in Dendermonde wants to be the first renewable energy community on industrial estates in Flanders. Joint investments in renewable energy should halve CO2 emissions to 60 000 a year in three years time.
The initiative originated with the 130-member Business Club Dendermonde. "Carrying out projects is in our DNA," says chairman Hugo Van den Broecke, a former general manager of the steel construction company Intersig. In the past, the club launched projects on camera surveillance, mobility and the construction of its own fibre-optic network on the Bosveld/Hoogveld industrial estate. Five years ago, they decided to strive for more climate neutrality. This resulted in the creation of Lovitas. This company wants to invest 58 million euros in renewable energy: solar panels, wind turbines, batteries and a cogeneration plant. Another 10 million euros will go to software development. The intention is for the participants in the business park to exchange energy with each other.
Lovitas already invested 2 million euros in Energytix, the software platform that manages all energy flows in the Lovitas smart grid, about half of which was financed by a project subsidy from Vlaio, the Flemish Innovation and Enterprise Agency.
Based on artificial intelligence and machine learning, the platform reads the data from all the meters in the companies. Taking into account the weather forecasts and the evolution of the electricity market, it controls the local electricity production and local demand, and ensures the CO2 neutrality of all companies.
with Jan Van De Weghe (POM Oost-Vlaanderen), Bart Leeman (IRC/Lovitas), Hugo Van den Broecke (Lovitas) and Frederik Loeckx (Flux50) in Trends.