EDF contributes funding to U.K. biomass district heating project

By EDF Energy | June 01, 2015

EDF Energy has announced that it is contributing £1 million ($1.52 million) to fund energy efficient heating measures in three Manchester tower blocks, which were recently launched collectively as “Tribe.”

The funds will be put towards the installation of low carbon, biomass district heating systems across the 192 apartments. Biomass heating uses renewable energy sources, such as wood pellets, to generate heat or electricity.

Without this funding, building developers would have had to use an alternate heating method that would have been more costly for residents to run and less environmentally friendly.

Thanks to the installation of biomass heating systems, 27,000 metric tons of carbon will be saved and residents could save up to £880 per year on heating bills.

Nigel Rawlings, of Tribe Apartments Ltd., who led the project on the ground, said: “We were fortunate to benefit from an offer of £1 million of Energy Company Obligation funding from EDF Energy. Had we not received this, we may have had to install electric panel heating, which is significantly cheaper to install but far more costly for occupiers and substantially more damaging to the environment. Instead we have a district heating system that is both environmentally friendly and cost efficient. We estimate a lifetime saving of over 27,000 metric tons of carbon across all three Tribe blocks.

“Each block benefits from its own energy center with a 400 kwh biomass boiler, a 12,000 liter thermal store and an electric emergency back-up facility. All 64 apartments in each block has its own efficient central heating system which is heated from the single boiler.”

“We have installed a host of other green measures across all the three blocks including double and triple glazing, roof insulation, a rainscreen cladding system with substantial wall insulation, low energy lighting and smart meters. We are aiming to achieve an excellent, or possibly even outstanding, evaluation from BREEAM, the world's foremost environmental assessment method.”

Eric Salomon, Energy Field Services Director at EDF Energy, said: “We are proud to be able to bring our ECO project funding to Manchester. Energy efficiency improvements such as these will make a significant difference to the lives of the local residents who will now be able to benefit from lower fuel bills and much warmer homes.”

The work is due for completion in July.

EDF Energy is working on this project in conjunction with Ancoats Residential Holdings Ltd. and Manchester City Council.