The French ski resort of Chamrousse has agreed a multi-energy ‘smart grid’ contract with the power supplier ENGIE Solutions that will make it the first ‘Smart Ski Resort’ in the country.

The project will see the village centre in Le Recoin renovated as a ‘hyperlieu’ – a hyperzone – in the mountains as a model sustainable city.

Biomass heating will replace oil and gas

The goal is to reduce the resort’s carbon footprint. To replace oil and petrol, ENGIE Solutions has created a heating network for Chamrousse using local and renewable energy from biomass.

A 2km-long network due to be completed by 2022 will supply heating and domestic hot water for the equivalent of 1125 homes and cover 87% of heating needs.

Reduced Emissions

The use of biomass will significantly improve the environmental impact by reducing emissions by more than 72,000 tonnes of CO2.

The new wood boiler will require more than 4,000 tonnes of wood per year, which will all be supplied within a local radius of 50km maximum in the Isère department.

The architectural plans for this wood-fired boiler has also been designed to blend into the local area seamlessly and will allow for the construction of a parking lot with 300 spaces.

More Electric and Hydrogen options

In addition, ENGIE will set up green electric and hydrogen services. There will be a hydrogen station with a capacity of 40 kg/d and 11 electric chargers to supply the resort’s electric fleet of vehicles, bikes and shuttle buses.

Solar power is included as well: a new 9,500 m2 array of photovoltaic panels generating 900 MWh per annum.

Reduced energy bills

Across the board the various changes should lead to a reduction in energy bills for locals in Chamrousse of around 28%.