Airfield site at centre of study on cutting-edge home heat networks

Published on: 12 Jan 2016

Homes could benefit from cheaper fuel bills and CO2 emissions could be reduced if new development sites like 
Filton Airfield had a local heat network installed, according to a study.

The research, focusing on the Cribbs Patchway New Neighbourhood where 5,700 homes are due to be built over the next 20 years, was commissioned by South Gloucestershire Council to look into the viability of using an energy centre in the middle of a large-scale housing development.

Under the scheme, instead of using electricity and gas to heat their homes individually residents’ houses are connected to a local heat network, which delivers hot water to homes via a network of underground pipes.

Chris Sane, head of transport and strategic projects, said: “The results of the study are really encouraging for people wanting to invest in a new home which will be at the cutting edge of new technology and the way housing sites are developed over the coming years.

“Heat networks supply heat from a central source directly to homes and businesses through a network of pipes carrying hot water.
“This means that individual homes and businesses do not need to generate their own heat.”

The study investigated a range of different sized networks, the largest of which could be expected to save 7,338 tonnes of CO2 a year (a 59 per cent reduction compared to individual gas boilers in each property).

The findings have been published at www.southglos.
gov.uk/heatnetwork and also look at the possibility of 
creating a connection to supply electricity to The Mall shopping centre.

Councillor Matthew Riddle, leader of South Gloucestershire Council, said in light of the recent talks at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris recently, it was important the council shared the results of the study in an attempt to help combat global warming.

He said: “As a country it is estimated that we spend £32 billion a year on heating which accounts for a third of our greenhouse gases.

“In South Gloucestershire, we want to be at the forefront of developing local heat networks so that we can play our part in the move to low carbon heating and demonstrate our commitment to the environment.”

The council is urging developers and energy companies to get in touch on 01454 863468 or at sustainability@southglos.gov.uk to discuss the study’s findings and installing heat networks at their own sites.

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