Thursday, February 22, 2024

Stoke-on-Trent City Council saves enough energy to power 2,400 homes

Stoke-on-Trent City Council has saved seven million kWh of energy, the equivalent needed to provide the electricity demands of 2,400 homes for a year, since completing a major project to decarbonise 11 key public buildings in partnership with Siemens.

The Council has made the energy savings since May last year, when it completed a three-year improvement programme to upgrade its estate.

It worked closely with decarbonisation partner Siemens to audit Council buildings, including offices and sports centres. Siemens then deployed a mix of technologies to minimise energy use and to generate its own lower carbon electricity.

The project formed part of Stoke-on-Trent City Council’s response to rising energy prices as well as climate change and its effort to reach national net-zero targets by 2050.

Low-energy LED lighting, which was part funded by Siemens Financial Services, was installed across sites, while air source heat pumps were deployed at the buildings that won’t be immediately connected to the council’s upcoming District Heat Network project. Alongside this, a smart building management system was installed to provide accurate monitoring of the buildings’ energy use.

The seven million kWh saved is on top of the council directly generating 2.3 million kWh of electricity with the help of solar panels fitted to Dimensions Leisure Centre, New Horizons Sports and Leisure Centre, and Fenton Manor Sports Complex. Combined Heat and Power (CHP) installations are also now online across the estate to produce lower cost electricity as well as recycle waste heat to reduce natural gas usage and further improve efficiency.

The replacement of natural gas heating systems has also enabled the Council to save 1,506 tonnes of CO2, which is equivalent to taking 886 cars off the road for a year.**

Councillor Carl Edwards, Stoke-on-Trent City Council cabinet member for housing and the environment, said: “Our energy savings represent a great leap forward in our decarbonisation, and forms a crucial part of our ongoing commitment to decarbonisation.

“Siemens’ support has been invaluable in setting up our future as a sustainable, responsible organisation that leads by example in local government, and in the communities we operate in.”

Faye Bowser, head of energy performance services at Siemens UK and Ireland, said: “Energy prices have become more volatile at a time when local authority budgets have tightened. But pioneering projects like this show how local authorities can significantly cut their energy use, which will save money for reinvesting in their communities, while making good progress towards addressing the climate emergency.

“The technology is readily available to help major public sector organisations like Stoke-on-Trent City Council to make huge gains on the road to net-zero. We’re proud to provide both the strategic support and the necessary technology that’s made a major difference to the council.”

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