The Communauté de Communes du Mené : filled up with energy !

Pépinière d'entreprise Menérpôle au Gouray dans le Mené
Published by Yannick Régnier on 2010. 02. 15.

During the championship celebration of the French RES league in Dunkerque, the Special Price of the Jury was awarded to the Communauté de communes du Mené (6 309 inhabitants, Côtes-d’Armor, Brittany region) – an association of local authorities – for his exemplary energy policy. This Communauté aims at becoming a « zero net energy » territory by 2012 (for heat and electricity), meaning a territory producing all the energy than he consumes – first reducing his energy needs then covering remaining needs with local and renewable energy sources – exactly as the « zero net energy » building does.

Michel Fablet, president of the Communauté de communes, and Jack Aignel, deputy president in charge of the environment, spoke on January 26th at a workshop organised by the CLER entitled: « towards 100% renewable energies: energy and local development », during the Energy conference in Dunkerque.

The strategy of the Communauté de communes du Mené lays on 4 main areas:

  • Understand and accept his weaknesses and transform them into advantages
  • Use the force of a strong culture of local development
  • Create synergies with the civil and cooperative society, companies and citizens
  • Mobilize local financing capacities to support profitable projects

His approach consists in:

  • Analysing the need of the territory
  • Identifying the locally available resources
  • Developing processes allowing the exploitation of these resources
  • Associating concerned actors to each action
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Wind farm of Trébry - (c) Erwan Henry  After two years of studies (2004-2005), an action plan in 10 points was set up. The first actions were the start of Ménergol oil-works and wood fuelled district-heating networks in Saint-Gouëno and Le Gouray (2006-2007).

The actual phase, called deployment phase (2008-2010), aims at meeting 80% of energy needs (but for transport) with renewable energies:

  • The territorial methanization unit Géotexia will eventually be in operation 10 years after the start of the project. It will meet the needs for heating of 4000 households.
  • A first wing farm, being built, will meet the domestic needs for specific electricity (without heating) of the whole Communauté (3200 households). Its project, called Citéol Mené (« wind citizens ») is in line with a participative approach with the creation of 8 Cigales (participative investment clubs) that will gather local investors owning together 30% of the share capital. Two other projects are waiting for the building permit. All farms together will have 16 wind turbines.
  • Three new wood-fuelled district-heating networks will be created: the one of Saint Jacut will be in operation in 2010; the ones of Plessala and Langourla are under progress.
  • Many solar photovoltaic installations already exist. New projects together with solar thermal projects will see the light soon.
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Business incubator Ménerpôle - (c) CC du Mené

Year 2010 will see the take off of the main realisations in the Communauté de communes, which will be both the driving force and the acknowledgement of his territorial approach, favourable to the dynamism of the business park and business incubator Ménerpôle, both dedicated to green technologies and created in 2009. This business area and incubator will be both the consequence and the catalyst of territorial project on energy, creating local jobs and resources. Connected to high-speed communication networks, they will also be a telecommuting place.

Short-term, new work areas will be developed around the « zero net energy » buildings, energy efficiency for local authorities and citizens, and the creation of local craft industry dealing with tomorrow’s technologies. A prospective thinking on a territorial energy loop (coupling of local electricity, gas and heat networks) is ahead. February 2010

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