Power From the People
Each day at Stockholm’s Central Station, the largest travel center in Scandinavia, 250,000 commuters are heating up the air in the station as they make use of Sweden’s high-speed and regional rail service. (Just think of them as a quarter of a million portable space heaters.) A real estate firm believes the hot air generated by the commuters could supply 15 percent of the heating needed for a 13-story office building going up next door to the station. Warm air will be sucked into vents, then used to heat water which will be piped into the building. Because the station has an existing ventilation system, the necessary modifications will cost just $47,000 U.S. dollars.
But how many millions were invested in coming up with such a radical, blue-sky idea? According to project leader Karl Sundholm, “It just came up at a coffee meeting last summer. Somebody suggested: why not do something with all this heat in the station?"
What do you think? Another brilliant idea from the country that brought us IKEA and ABBA, or just so much hot air?