SHARC Energy Systems and Scottish Water Horizons win top award

SHARC Energy Systems, in partnership with Scottish Water Horizons, has won the innovation award at the Scottish Green Energy Awards 2017.

The awards, hosted by Scottish Renewables, honour the determination and creative thinking which defines new approaches to sustainable energy.

SHARC Energy Systems and Scottish Water Horizons were nominated in the innovation category for their ground-breaking project at Borders College, in Galashiels, which was launched in 2015.

SHARC’s heat recovery system works by intercepting waste water from the adjacent town sewer line operated by Scottish Water. It supplies the college campus with the majority of its annual heating and hot water demand, enabling it to save 150 tonnes of carbon per annum.

The technology extracts the natural warmth contained within waste water and transfers the heat to the clean side of the heating system via a heat exchange mechanism. The recovered heat is then amplified via heat pumps to generate the appropriate temperatures for use in buildings.

The heat produced is being sold to Borders College under a 20-year purchase agreement, producing savings in energy, costs and carbon emissions.

The innovative scheme is the first of its kind in the UK and the first time the technology has been integrated with the public sewerage system.

With significant potential for further roll out across Scotland, there are already several projects scheduled for completion next year.

It is the second time in a month that the project has been recognised for its positive impact on sustainability.

On November 15, it won the Best Newcomer Award at the Green Gown Awards which celebrate sustainability initiatives being undertaken in the university and college sector.

Russ Burton, chief operating officer at SHARC Energy Systems, said: “On behalf of the team at SHARC, I am absolutely thrilled to have won the innovation category at the Scottish Green Energy Awards.

“It is a privilege for SHARC to have been involved in developing the Borders installation, in partnership with Scottish Water Horizons.

“The work we have done with Scottish Water Horizons and Borders College is a real demonstration of how collaboration and shared vison can generate an outstanding outcome for all stakeholders of a process.

“To have been included in the innovations category of the Scottish Green Energy Awards alongside some of the other exciting renewable energy projects being driven forward by Scotland’s appetite and enthusiasm for green energy activity, was very flattering.

“It is a testament to all the hard work from the teams at SHARC, Scottish Water Horizons and Borders College and we look forward to building on these achievements over the next few months.”

Donald MacBrayne, Scottish Water Horizons Business Development Manager, said: “These awards are a real showcase for sustainable energy and it’s an honour to have been nominated in this category, let alone to have won it.

“Innovation is at the heart of what we do in terms of developing new ways to generate sustainable energy – in this case heat – which will have a wide range of positive benefits.

“We hope that this latest recognition, added to the project’s success in the Green Gown Awards, adds to the excitement across our communities and our industry about the potential for this kind of technology and systems like the Borders College heat from sewage network.”

Pete Smith, Vice Principal, Finance and Resources, at Borders College, said: “Borders College is delighted that this innovative project is gaining recognition nationally, first winning a Green Gown Award and now also winning this Green Energy Award.

“It really is testament to the entire team that the project has been such a success and shows what a true spirit of partnership working can achieve.”