Institutes win funds for cheap heating

August 23, 2002

Edinburgh and Warwick universities are set to save thousands of pounds annually after winning government support for an innovative community heating scheme, writes Olga Wojtas.

The universities are installing a Combined Heat and Power (CHP) network, a technology that helps to reduce carbon levels by simultaneously generating heat and power, usually electricity, in a single process. The two universities are among eight organisations to win a total of £3.3 million from the government's community energy programme.

Eoin Lees, chief executive of the Energy Saving Trust, which manages the scheme along with the Carbon Trust, said: "It is very encouraging to see such a positive response to this first funding round, particularly from universities. There is a growing realisation of the environmental and economic benefits available for universities through community heating."

Mr Lees said the two universities expected to save more than £300,000 between them on their fuel bills. And more than 4,000 students will have CHP heating and power in their study bedrooms.

Edinburgh will update its heating network to include a CHP system for its main hall of residence.

Warwick's existing heat network operates mainly in academic buildings, with the halls of residence using individual gas-fired boilers, but both sets of buildings will now be linked and supplied through CHP.

Rodney Perry, Warwick's university service engineer, said: "As well as saving fuel costs, it will also mean a significant reduction in carbon dioxide emissions."

A new bidding round for capital funding has just opened, with a closing date of October 31.

For programme or application information, contact the community energy team on 0870 850 6085 or email communityenergy@est.co.uk

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