UK news update September 2023

Consortium acquires energy company for £260 million • £13.7 million to Heat Network Efficiency Scheme (HNES) • Glasgow’s district heating potential outlined in new report • Read more about the developments in sustainable heating and cooling in this month's news update from the UK

Consortium acquires energy company for £260 million 

A consortium comprising Swiss Life Asset Managers and Schroders Greencoat has announced their decision to acquire Equans Urban Energy. Valued at £260m, this acquisition not only includes entities like East London Energy and Equans DE Holding Company but also brings Humber Energy under its management.

Equans’ move to sell aligns with its broader strategic vision, which focuses on diversifying from asset-centric operations. The commercial terms of the deal have been agreed upon, and the final completion of the deal is estimated for the end of 2023, subject to regulatory approvals.

Furthermore, the transaction results in a capital injection which the company will use for new strategic investments in various energy networks. This includes construction of new heat networks and optimisation of existing infrastructure.

Read more in article from Partnerships Bulletin

Heat Network Efficiency Scheme (HNES) closes first round of grant applications

The UK government’s commitment to sustainable heating solutions has taken another significant leap forward. A fresh allocation of £13.7 million under the newly-established Heat Network Efficiency Scheme (HNES) is set to result if increased comfort and environmental benefits for over 11,000 residents.

The initiative has dedicated £13 million to 24 innovative projects. These endeavours are aimed at increasing the efficiency of urban heat networks, promising an enhanced quality of life for more than 4,000 residents. Additionally, a designated amount of £640,000 will fund specialised optimisation studies, ensuring that heat networks operate at their peak efficiency, a move that will further enhance the living conditions for an additional 7,000 residents.

Among the projects set to benefit:

  • Leeds City Council: Poised to receive a substantial £2.2 million, the focus will be on refining heat networks that cater to 837 residents.
  • Great Places Housing Association: Entrusted with over £1.6 million, this organisation has its eyes set on mitigating challenges such as outdated equipment and insulation inefficiencies in Sheffield.
  • The Guinness Partnership: With a grant of £2 million, they’re geared to augment the efficiency across four distinct heat networks, impacting almost 700 residents.

As the landscape of urban heating evolves, these targeted investments highlight the UK’s dedication to enhancing residential warmth while reducing environmental impact.

Read more in article from Air Quality News

Glasgow’s district heating potential outlined in new report

Glasgow’s carbon footprint is hefty, with 2.4 million tonnes of carbon emissions annually, 43% of which comes from natural gas. A recent report, unveiling the prospects of district heating networks, suggests that 46% of Glasgow’s inhabitants, are well-positioned to get their heating and hot water supply supplied using the technology. This would enhance, environmental, financial performance while improving residents’ comfort.

The recently published Local Heat and Energy Efficiency Strategy (LHEES) presents a dual-purpose roadmap: (1) to pinpoint areas of Glasgow with intense heat demand and (2) to foster energy conservation through enhanced building efficiency. The public’s opinion is highly sought after, with an active consultation period open until September 25.

Furthermore, the LHEES has identified 21 city zones suitable for the integration of efficient heating systems. It also outlines several energy sources to fuel the networks:

  • Water source heat pumps using the River Clyde.
  • Recovered heat from waste processing plants, like the Glasgow Recycling and Renewable Energy Centre.
  • Recovered heat from abandoned mines.
  • Recovered heat from commercial establishments like bakeries, data centres, and distilleries.

Read more in article from Scottish Housing News

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