How does it work? ‘We use two large combined heat and power plants,’ explains Thomas Edathy, managing director of the public utilities. He’s standing at the top of the slide of the outdoor pool looking proudly out over the spacious grounds of the leisure pool complex. There, he explains how a combined heat and power plant (CHP) works: ‘In a CHP natural gas is combusted using a turbine construction. Not only does this produce electricity, it also automatically produces heat during the combustion process.’ This is good for the environment because instead of generating heat and electricity separately, they are produced together, which can reduce CO2 emissions by one-third.
Overall, the two CHPs generate more than enough energy to supply the entire water park with heat and electricity. Swimming pools, showers, saunas – everything here is heated using the park’s self-produced energy. Sometimes the CHP generates so much electricity that it can even supply other companies. Any excess heat produced that cannot be immediately used in the water park is stored in two 60,000-litre water tanks and can then be fed back into the leisure pool’s heating system as needed. This means that none of the energy generated is wasted.