Aberdeen seeing the benefits of combined heat and power

Aberdeen's combined heat and power (CHP) district heating network reach is stretching further across the city, slashing fuel bills and carbon dioxide emissions in the Scottish city.

Work has begun to link three more properties – Constitution Court sheltered housing complex, Hanover Street Community Centre and the Town House – into the award-winning scheme which already provides 14 multi-storey blocks and eight public buildings with space and water heating. Work to link in a further eight multi-storey blocks is due to be completed in the summer.

Heating duct laying work is being carried out in the city centre and beach areas in preparation for linking Constitution Court, Hanover Street Community Centre and the Town House into the district heating network. Work to link the buildings into the network is expected to be completed this year as the city fully embraced CHP.

The cost of extending the network is being completely covered by a £1m Scottish Government grant. The cost of connecting the Town House (£34,000) and Hanover Street Community Centre (£20,000) is covered by the Central Energy Efficiency Fund and savings on the heating costs will cover the capital outlay in less than five years.

The project, which was used as a case study by the WWF in its report Carbon Countdown for homes: How to make Scotland's existing homes low carbon, has almost halved the fuel costs and carbon emissions for the buildings involved, while nearly doubling their National Home Energy Rating.

Throughout Aberdeen there are 4,500 flats in 59 multi-storey blocks, most of which are "hard to heat" homes occupied by low income households. Around 70 per cent of the occupants were living in fuel poverty.

Aberdeen City Council's Housing and Environment convener Aileen Malone said: "Anyone who wants to see the value of combined heat and power schemes need only come to Aberdeen to see what we have achieved. CHP has been one of our real success stories and our tenants are now enjoying much lower fuel bills and warmer, comfortable homes.

"As the scheme grows, so do the benefits is provides – more and more people are seeing their fuel bills slashed, significant savings are being realised on heating costs for several public buildings and the city's carbon footprint is being cut."

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