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Local Energy Production and Consumption Model Smart Community Demonstration Project Launches in Speyer, Germany
-NEDO Signs Memorandum of Understanding with City of Speyer and Stadtwerke Speyer GmbH-

July 24, 2015
New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO)

NEDO, the German city of Speyer, and Stadtwerke Speyer GmbH (SWS) of Germany have agreed to promote a smart community demonstration project in Speyer and signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the project.

With the full cooperation of the city and SWS, the project aims to introduce and demonstrate technologies to establish a “self-consumption model” where PV generated power in the community is consumed locally and will run from FY2015 to FY2017.

Demonstration Site (Speyer, Germany)
Demonstration Site (Speyer, Germany)

1. Project Overview

In Germany, renewable energy currently provides more than 20% of the total power demand, and the federal government has set targets to increase the ratio of renewable energy to 35% by 2020 and to 80% by 2050. However, with the reduction in cost of PV power generation, grid parity*1 has already become apparent thus practically ending the Feed-in Tariff program in Germany. Because of this, the benefits for customers who sell the electricity generated by their PV power generation equipment to the electric utilities have been diminished. In addition, reverse power flow*2 from PV power generation is difficult for the electrical grid to handle due to the limited capacity of distribution lines, and with inverter output suppression measures already imposed on residential PV power generation equipment it is becoming an urgent issue to build a system where as much power as possible generated from residential PV power generation equipment is consumed by the producing households, decreasing the need for selling the power to electricity companies.

In this context, NEDO launched a feasibility study in November 2014 in collaboration with the German city of Speyer and Stadwerke Speyer GmbH (SWS) for a local energy production and consumption model smart community demonstration project. As a result, with the conclusion of a Memorandum of Understanding, it has been agreed to officially begin the demonstration project.

In the German state of Rheinland-Pfalz, which has set a goal of introducing renewable energy to satisfy 100% of electricity in the state by 2030, NEDO has launched a local energy production and consumption model smart community demonstration project in collaboration with the city of Speyer, local power corporation SWS, and housing corporation GEWO Wohnen GmbH (GEWO) to increase the economic benefits for customers who have installed PV power generation equipment while coping with power quality deterioration issues posed by reverse power flow in the electric distribution system.

This project will be implemented jointly by NEDO, NTT DOCOMO, NTT FACILITIES, Hitachi Chemical, and Hitachi Information and Telecommunication Technologies in collaboration with German corporations, SWS and GEWO. The project will run from FY2015 to FY2017 and aims to introduce and demonstrate technologies to establish a “self-consumption model” where PV generated power is produced and consumed locally.

Through the installation and operation of a demonstration system based on state-of-the-art and environmentally-superior Japanese energy storage technology, heat storage technologies using heat pump water heaters, and information and communication technologies (ICT) to achieve the functions of a Home Energy Management System (HEMS) in a real life environment in Germany, the project aims to establish the “self-consumption model” for local production and consumption of PV generated power and to contribute to solving the growing problem in Germany of suppressing reverse power flow from PV power generation while also demonstrating the reduction in total household energy costs including heating costs.

With the growing introduction of PV power generation in Japan following the launch of the Feed-in Tariff program for renewable energy in July 2012, we expect that the outcome of this demonstration will also contribute to accelerate future renewable energy introduction in Japan.

Project Diagram

Project Diagram

The signing ceremony was held on July 23, 2015 in Speyer, Germany; Dr. Kuniyoshi, Executive Director of NEDO, Mr. Eger, Mayor of Speyer, and Mr. Buehring, President of SWS, were in attendance to sign the MOU.


*1 Grid Parity:
The point at which the cost of power from renewable energy sources becomes equal to the price of the electricity purchased from the grid.
*2 Reverse Power Flow:
The flow of electricity from a non-utility generating source to the electrical grid. This happens when the amount of electricity generated from residential power generation equipment such as PVs or wind turbines operated and connected to the grid is greater than the amount of power consumed by the generating party.

2. For more information, please contact:

Smart Community Department, NEDO
Phone: +81-44-520-5274
Persons in Charge: Mr. Yamakawa, Mr. Kurosawa, Mr. Miyake