Scottish bodies get £100m to reduce emissions


NHS Balfour Hospital is Scotland’s first all-electric acute services healthcare facility

The Scottish Central Government Energy Efficiency Grant scheme will make the £100 million available during this parliamentary session. The new funding is designed to help public bodies unlock and realise further investment in measures to improve energy efficiency and install low- and zero-carbon heat systems in buildings.

The funding launch coincides with the publication of the latest analysis of public bodies’ emissions, which shows a 5.8% reduction in reported emissions in 2020/21 compared to the previous year.

Overall public bodies’ reported emissions have now fallen by a third since reporting began six years ago. Over the same period, emissions generated by electricity use have more than halved across public bodies.

There has been a 64% cut in NHS buildings emissions since 1990, with the £10bn, 10-year NHS capital programme supporting its net zero commitment. Scotland’s first net-zero hospital, NHS Balfour Hospital, opened in 2019.

Zero carbon buildings minister Patrick Harvie said: “The ongoing cost of living crisis and energy security issues caused by Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine make the case for pursuing our vision to improve energy efficiency across Scotland’s homes and buildings, and transition away from high-carbon heating systems, even more compelling.

“Our heat in buildings strategy sets our plans for more than one million homes and 50,000 non-domestic buildings to be running on low or zero carbon heating systems by 2030. Our support to help property owners and tenants to improve the energy efficiency of their homes and buildings will help to reduce both domestic and non-domestic energy bills while also tackling climate change.

“It is imperative that every sector across Scotland, including public bodies, takes action to meet our climate obligations. The latest analysis shows further positive steps being taken by the public sector, and this funding will help accelerate action in the crucial years ahead while also realising energy savings that can be reinvested into important public services.”

NHS Balfour Hospital is Scotland’s first all-electric acute services healthcare facility. Heating and hot water are provided by twin air source heat pumps. Green electricity is provided by an array of solar photovoltaic cells, powering low-energy LED lighting and high-frequency low-loss fluorescent lighting in clinical areas, with lighting control software managing demand according to occupancy levels. The building fabric and components all contribute to reduced energy demand due to insulation properties, high construction standards and thermal efficiencies.

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