Environmentally friendly heating at Andermatt Swiss Alps
It’s snowing; winter season began at Andermatt-Sedrun ski destination this weekend and the temperature seldom climbs above zero degrees Celsius. Winter has arrived at Andermatt, but that doesn’t mean biting cold. Rather, winter in Andermatt means bright and beautiful winter days with cosy cafes and restaurants for warming up. And another will be added soon: The Restaurant in The Chedi Andermatt hotel.
And the best part is this: The pleasant warmth in The Restaurant and throughout the entire five-star deluxe hotel The Chedi Andermatt is CO2 neutral, thanks to the new district heat system of the Netzgesellschaft Andermatt. How does it work? “Very simple”, says Christian Simmen, General Manager of oeko energie AG in Attinghausen. Very simple? “Yes, thanks to wood. Wood is the environmentally friendliest of raw materials.” The explanation for this is really simple, as the video of the CO2 Bank Switzerland shows with clarity and wit. When wood is burnt to create heat, the CO2 released is only that which the tree sequestered while it was growing. In other words, the bottom line is neutral. What’s more, wood is a renewable resource that leaves behind no waste.
Part of the energy changeover
It has been a good month since the wood furnace at the district heat station in Göschenen was fired up for the first time and the first wood chips burnt. A very special moment for Christian Simmen. His oeko energie AG is a young Uri company and can well be called a pioneer in the energy changeover; after all, district heating is expected to play an important role in the Swiss federal government’s Energy Strategy 2050. The core business of Christian Simmen and his team is to provide heat to end users. At the Andermatt Swiss Alps resort a small district heating system with several hundred meters of underground pipe was installed for the first apartment houses Steinadler and Hirsch. The heat is currently being employed in the so-called drying-out phase. Already by next winter it will serve to warm up the apartment owners after a day on the slopes – all in an environmentally friendly way.
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