E.ON announced on February 8 that it installed a fuel cell in the Radisson Blu hotel in Franfurt to generate a large share of the energy needed to run the hotel free of emissions. Radisson Blu is an architectural landmark built in the form of massive disc. Starting in late summer 2017, the fuel cells will supply about three gigawatt hours (GWh) of electricity and two GWh of heat to the hotel, reducing CO2emissions by about 600 tons a year. This amount is equal to the CO2 emissions from 50,000 cars driving 100 kilometers. E.ON sees enormous potential energy savings in the hotel industry: energy intensive processes such as heating water, lighting and cooling mean that a hotel requires substantial amounts of electricity and heat throughout the entire year. Compared to office buildings, the hotel industry has relatively high energy costs – on average between 5 and 10 percent of total operating revenue.
According to estimates, the German hotel industry emits about five million tons of CO2annually. At the same time, sustainability is becoming ever more important for hotel guests. “The continuous growth in the hotel industry makes it an important market for E.ON’s energy solutions business. Innovative energy solutions such as fuel cells can supply added value for hotels, as they significantly lower energy costs and dramatically increase environmental friendliness – up to the point of being climate neutral”, says Karsten Wildberger, member of the Executive Board at E.ON SE.
The project is also receiving additional support of in total 800,541 Euros through the “National Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology Innovation Program” from the Germany’s Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure. The National Innovation Program for Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology (NOW) GmbH is sponsoring the project with the goal of developing and marketing internationally competitive hydrogen and fuel cell technology products. FuelCell Energy Solutions will supply the fuel cells for the project and monitor the project remotely together with E.ON, to help make sure the system runs as efficiently as possible.