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Energy from waste heat network projects awarded £26m funding

Heat networks harnessing energy from waste are to be developed in London and Devon with the support of almost £30 million awarded through the Government’s Heat Networks Investment Project (HNIP).

Energy from waste heat network projects in the London borough of Southwark and Cranbrook in east Devon have become the latest recipients of funding under the Heat Networks Investment Project (HNIP) – which has awarded more than £250 million to heat network schemes since it opened to applicants in 2018.

Energy from waste plants both deliver significant base-load low carbon electricity and process waste that would otherwise end up in landfill. The generation of electricity results in high temperature waste heat which can be captured and used to heat homes and buildings while the ash produced as a by-product can also be used as aggregate in the construction sector.

Veolia has been awarded more than £16 million to grow an energy from waste, low-carbon heat network across Southwark – supplying heating and hot water to several existing estates and schools that currently depend on gas boilers and supporting the future growth to a new regeneration area aimed to accommodate 20,000 new homes over the next 15 years.

The project is subject to further agreement with South East London Combined Heat and Power, or SELCHP, the existing energy from waste energy centre, and will involve some modifications to both improve efficiencies and enable further heat extraction and the construction of a new six kilometer district heat network expected to deliver on average 11,100 tonnes of carbon savings each year.

Additionally, Cranbrook – an east Devon town of some 2,800 homes in development since 2011 – has been awarded £10.7 million under the HNIP.

Cranbrook is in close proximity to the low carbon Skypark business park with a newly funded single heat network to serve both developments. Over the next 20 years, Skypark is predicted to create up to 6,500 new jobs.

The network will heat 3,500 homes, 1.4m square feet of commercial space and link to a similar Monkerton and Tithebarn partnership which will connect 4,600 homes and 800k sq ft commercial space.

The interconnection of these networks will enable the bulk supply of heat to both networks including all necessary resilience and back up.

The project will also support the planned expansion of Cranbrook to circa 8,000 houses through enabling the delivery of a Future Homes Standard compliant energy solution.

Heat networks at their ‘brilliant best’

In early March it was announced that the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) had named Triple Point Heat Networks Investment Management as delivery partner for its three year, £288 million, Green Heat Network Fund (GHNF).

The group – which comprises Triple Point Investment Management, AECOM, Amberside Advisors, Asteros Advisors, Lux Nova Partners and Gemserv – had previously been selected to deliver HNIP.

“Heat networks are at their brilliant best when using heat from natural resources or here, with these two exciting schemes in Southwark and Cranbrook, when recovering heat which would otherwise be wasted,” Ken Hunnisett, project director at Triple Point Heat Networks Investment Management said.

“Benefitting from a combined award of loan and grant funding exceeding £26m, the scale and ambition of the two projects reflect the growth in the UK’s heat network market while also being exemplars of how green infrastructure can be a driver of tangible local economic growth and a compelling means of levelling up the very different communities of a bustling metropolitan borough and a Devon new town.

“The HNIP has now closed for applications, but we’ll continue to showcase its many success stories,” he added. “Over the past three years we have seen some incredible projects come forward for funding we look forward to seeing them develop and expand further.”

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