Even a closed swimming pool needs energy

Safe: The Titustherme in Frankfurt is heated with district heating.
Image: Wonge Bergman

Many municipalities are closing saunas and limiting pool opening times. The swimming pool industry association warns against using the energy crisis as an excuse to cover up other failures.

Et sounds good when a municipal company speaks of the role model function of the public sector. This is what the Wiesbaden-based company Mattiaqua did, for example, when it announced that it would not open the Kaiser-Friedrich-Therme for the time being after the revision and that the sauna landscapes of municipal indoor pools would be closed in order to save energy. This is also justified with the specifications of the federal government, which expects energy savings of up to 25 percent from the municipalities in order to reduce the difficulties in winter. Wiesbaden apparently acted with a sense of proportion. Water areas for school swimming, swimming courses and health offers should continue to be provided with moderate reductions in water and hall temperatures. It will be similar in Bad Homburg. Other municipalities, on the other hand, are considering more drastic restrictions such as the closure of entire indoor swimming pools.

The industry association Deutsche Gesellschaft für das Badewesen, which represents around 1,500 members, warns of this because the yield is dubious. Even closed bathrooms would have to be maintained. “Taking baths completely off the gas overnight would be fatal, since basic heat is required in the baths for the necessary maintenance status. Otherwise there is a risk of structural damage with high follow-up costs, which no municipality can want in times of already tight budgets,” says Managing Director Christian Mankel. The company has calculated that the subtle reduction of the water and room temperature by two degrees from the usual 28 degrees, which is manageable for the visitors and recommended by the City Day, saves 25 percent of energy. Significantly greater savings are not possible when the pools are closed.

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