Especially in the first district of Vienna – known for its numerous posh restaurants and cafés – people want to heed the request of the energy minister. The district Greens submitted the corresponding motion, and all parties represented in the district parliament, with the exception of the FPÖ, accepted it. “This year the heating would be completely incomprehensible in view of the energy crisis, almost a provocation,” says the club chairman of the Greens in the 1st district, Alexander Hirschenhauser, to the “Kurier”.
The decision in Vienna is an appeal, not a ban, because the district is not in a position to do that. The installation of radiant heaters is a federal matter.
The topic makes waves run high. At Plachutta in the Wollzeile, thanks to heating pads, guests can sit in short sleeves in the sidewalk café despite the cold temperatures. Elsewhere they already need thick jackets. The Café Landtmann, for example, wants to do without the heaters, as it has already explained.
Now it turns out that the measure demanded by Gewessler would not really bring much in Vienna. Even if all Viennese restaurateurs did without their radiant heaters, they would save a total of just 0.058 per thousand of the city’s annual energy consumption.
167 Viennese companies registered heating sponges with the municipal district office last year. If all of them have set up ten radiant heaters – that’s a very generous estimate – you get a rounded total of 1700 heating pads in the city. These consume 2.5 gigawatt hours during the season, as reported by “Falter”. The total annual consumption in Vienna is 37 TWh. The 2.5 gigawatt hours saved account for 0.058 per thousand.
Some still defend the measure: “It’s more about symbolism than real savings,” says a Twitter user.