Cheshire College South & West’s Chester Campus will get an environmentally friendly upgrade as their existing gas boilers are replaced with air source heat pumps and an electric hot water boiler.
This has been made possible due to the College securing almost £2m in funding from the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero.
The move to heat pumps will mean that the Campus is far more environmentally friendly for its staff, students and visitors, and energy efficiency is practiced on-site every day with it being reported that heat pumps are three times more efficient than gas-reliant boilers; known to produce masses of carbon dioxide.
Heat pumps work by extracting warmth from the air outside or a nearby water source before concentrating the heat and transferring it indoors, producing around three times the energy they use. The system is regarded by the scientific community and UK government as a vital component in the UK’s green energy transition, with climate advisors recommending that by 2030 there should be 5.5 million heat pumps in British homes.
The use of heat pumps could cut the College’s carbon emissions by more than 23 tonnes of Carbon Dioxide over 10 years, pushing the North West education provider one step closer to its goal of becoming net zero, thanks to the £1,962,922 award.
The funding forms part of a wider project titled the ‘Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme’ which provides funding for projects that decarbonise heating systems and improve energy efficiency in public sector buildings. 144 public sector organisations have been awarded money for 171 energy efficiency and heat decarbonisation projects, with the North West receiving just over £44.5m.
Kayleigh Fagan, Chester’s Student Campus Lead, said: “Students are so concerned about the environment and rank this issue highly because our future will be affected by lack of action to slow down climate change. As a student body, we are really pleased and proud to see the College taking substantial steps towards reducing our impact on the earth’s resources.”
Jasbir Dhesi, OBE, Principal and CEO at Cheshire College – South & West, commented: “Our College is committed to help improve the environment. Our pathway to achieving net zero is embedded in everything that we do, from delivering innovative courses centred around sustainability, to investing in state-of-the-art digital facilities and equipment; we are striving to be greener across all our sites and operations.
“Through this [funding], we will be able to accelerate our pathway to net zero by significantly reducing our carbon emissions. Our construction and engineering students will also be able to work closely with contractors to see first-hand the instillation and commissioning of new technologies. This investment in reducing our carbon emissions will benefit generations to come.”
Handbridge Park Councillors Razia Daniels and Neil Sullivan added: “This is fantastic news! We are delighted that Cheshire College South & West have been successful in securing this massive investment to help them ‘go green.’ This funding from the Government will make a significant impact and see out of day gas boilers replaced with the most up to date technology which is something vitally needed if we are to deliver our net zero ambitions both locally and across the whole country.
“The College is already making significant progress in this area and how fitting it is that a place intended to inspire the next generation – who are so committed to the environment – is able to benefit from a major cash boost. We are pleased to support all that the College is achieving in this area.”
Cheshire College prioritises sustainability across its three Campuses in Crewe, Ellesmere Port and Chester. As well as their involvement in the decarbonisation scheme, the College demonstrates this through various initiatives, such as energy consumption and waste management practises, free transport and electric charging points on-site, plus much more.
To learn more, visit the Cheshire College – South and West website.