Cleaner, greener and cheaper energy for the 21st century
Wednesday, 31 October 2012
Hampshire County Council is setting the bar for energy efficiency in the 21st century with proposals for a state-of-the-art District Energy Network that will reduce carbon emissions, save money, and help guarantee the county's future supply of energy.
Councillor Mel Kendal, Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Environment and Transport, is to consider proposals at his Decision Day on 6 November 2012 to advance the energy network project - working with the Royal Hampshire County Hospital, University of Winchester, HM Prison Winchester and Winchester City Council.
A District Energy Network (DEN) is an efficient and reliable system that provides heating, hot water and electricity to local businesses, householders and local authorities. It distributes heat in the form of hot water via insulated, underground pipes to local buildings. If used in conjunction with a Combined Heat and Power engine (which captures what would be otherwise wasted heat from a power plant) it can also generate electricity for distribution. Hampshire County Council has been leading the investigation into whether such a scheme could work in Winchester.
A high-level feasibility study has established that a Winchester District Energy Network would be viable. The study suggested that there are practical opportunities for two schemes in the city: a 'West' scheme which could serve the hospital, prison and university; and a 'City' scheme, initially heating the County Council's buildings.
Following the study's conclusion, further refinement of the technical features and delivery options is now required. If the recommendations are agreed, Hampshire County Council will work with its partners to develop a full business case.
The West and City schemes would be the focus of the first stage of the project, but the potential to expand or develop additional networks around the city would be explored in due course, including the potential for residential areas where viable.
Councillor Kendal commented:
"This Hampshire County Council initiative is a unique opportunity to deliver an energy network that could serve the City for many years to come. I will consider the details of the report and make a decision based on its recommendations, but I can see that the network has the potential to reduce the carbon footprint of Winchester and help assure our energy supply in the future, as well as cut the energy costs in Winchester. This will put us in a strong position to start to tackle the future challenges posed by rising energy costs, helping to ensure we can continue to deliver services to the residents and community of Hampshire."