Municipal heat planning plan: privacy concerns

The Ministry of Construction is preparing a law on heat planning: the federal states are to provide plans for the heat transition. The FDP criticizes “data collection frenzy”.

Klara Geywitz (SPD), Federal Minister for Building and Housing Photo: Michael Kappeler/dpa

BERLIN taz It went one size smaller for them Picture-Not newspaper. “Habeck is planning the next heating hammer” was the title of the tabloid in its Wednesday edition. The report is not about the reform of the building energy law, about which the traffic light government has been arguing bitterly for weeks, but about a bill for municipal heating planning. The Picture senses the next scandal there: a “kind of heating police”.

The draft bill, which is also available to the taz, is currently still being coordinated by the departments. The leadership lay, unlike it the Picture suggested, but not in Habeck’s Ministry of Economics, but in the SPD-led Ministry of Construction. The Minister of Construction Klara Geywitz also reacted promptly on Twitter: Her ministry is “working at full speed (but without a hammer) on the basis for municipal heat planning. This creates security for homeowners and municipalities when modernizing the heating systems.”

The core of the draft law is as follows: The federal states should be obliged to draw up heat plans in order to ensure a climate-neutral heat supply by 2045. In concrete terms, this means that large cities (more than 100,000 inhabitants) should have these heating plans ready by the end of 2026, smaller areas (more than 10,000 inhabitants) by the end of 2028. Numerous municipalities are already doing this. The law should also anchor the goal of “generating half of the heat in the grid in a climate-neutral manner by 2030”.

The federal states can also transfer this task to the municipalities. These are intended to provide information on how specific buildings or companies are heated and how much energy is consumed. Data should be collected for this. For example, “building-specific annual final energy consumption of grid-bound energy sources in the last three years in kilowatt hours per year”. Or also: information on individual buildings and heating networks.

However, the Ministry of Construction makes it clear: “Contrary to the representation, the data is used here Picture not collected from the citizens, but from the operators of the energy infrastructures, who already have this data.”

Nevertheless, the first conflicts seem to be emerging within the traffic light government. The media company Table Media wrote, for example, that the FDP was blocking departmental votes in the cabinet. Above all, the Liberals have reservations about an implementation obligation and do not want to provide any additional funding from the federal government. When asked by the taz, the Ministry of Finance did not want to comment “on internal government votes”.

The energy policy spokesman for the FDP parliamentary group, Michael Kruse, told the taz: “It is wise to first do municipal heating planning and then build a building energy law on it.” This error should “cure the traffic light in the parliamentary procedure”. But he also criticized sharply: “The state’s mania for collecting data down to the smallest detail is not necessary for the energy supply of the future, so we will not go along with it.”

Karoline Otte from the Green Group cannot understand the excitement. “Municipal heat planning is a central project for the heat transition, the FDP and Union actually see it that way,” she told the taz. “It’s about getting an overview of which types of heating and heat sources are used, not about who exactly has which heating system in the basement.” When the association hearing starts, “data protection concerns can be discussed in more detail”.

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