The Welsh Government Energy Service has this week published its annual report for 2020-21, outlining successful operations throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.
These operations have included the acceleration of carbon reduction projects through the provision of support to public sector and community energy groups. The Energy Service exceeded a significant milestone in this period, helping to secure over £100 million for energy efficiency, renewable energy and low emission vehicle projects across Wales, since July 2018.
Other key achievements highlighted in the report include:
- £35 million worth of energy efficiency and renewable energy projects installed, including 9.1MW of renewable energy.
- £43 million committed to new energy efficiency, renewable and low emission vehicles projects, expected to generate:
- £58 million in lifetime energy bill savings for the public sector and
- £20 million in lifetime income for community energy groups in Wales.
These new projects will save an estimated 172,500 tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2), the same amount of CO2 that 210,000 domestic solar panel systems save each year.
The report details the work the Welsh Government Energy Service has undertaken to support each region within Wales to develop an energy strategy, to better understand the scale of the changes from moving to a low carbon energy system.
As part of the Welsh Government’s Covid-19 green recovery, the Welsh Government Energy Service provided extra support to 17 public sector organisations to accelerate energy efficiency and vehicle fleet projects, including Hywel Dda University Health Board.
Rob Elliot, director of estates facilities and capital management at Hywel Dda University Health Board, said: “Welsh Government Energy Service has provided excellent support and invaluable expertise to the Health Board over the last year to deliver a number of PV projects as well as securing grant funding for a range of energy efficiency projects. This ongoing support will be important if we are to scope and deliver further schemes to meet our decarbonisation reduction aspirations.”
Working with 18 public bodies across Wales, the Welsh Government Energy Service provided advice on infrastructure for an electric vehicle fleet, with 156 electric vehicles purchased across Wales worth over £5 million.
Debbie Jackson, fleet manager at Monmouthshire County Council, said: “The Welsh Government Energy Service supported Monmouthshire with procurement guidance and partial funding for four electric vehicles. Two will be used for delivery of freshly prepared school meals to schools in Monmouthshire and a low floor minibus will operate a ‘Grass roots service’, providing much needed transport for vulnerable and senior residents. These replaced old diesel vehicles and will help improve air quality, lower carbon emissions and reduce energy costs”.
As part of its work in the community energy sector, the Welsh Government Energy Service supported Egni Co-op and Newport City Council to complete the largest rooftop solar array in Wales on the Geraint Thomas National Velodrome of Wales. In total, 1,726 solar panels will supply 63% of the building’s annual electricity demand in a normal year. Efficient LED floodlights were also fitted on the velodrome track to professional racing standard. The project won the Alan Clark award for local/community energy at Solar & Storage Live 2020.
Dan McCallum, co-director of Egni Co-op, said: “This has been an amazing partnership project. Newport was the first Council to work with us, and that early commitment, along with grant funding and support from the Welsh Government Energy Service, has since enabled us to expand across Wales.”
The Energy Service is funded by Welsh Government and delivered by a consortium, led by Energy Saving Trust and Carbon Trust and supported by Local Partnerships. The consortium is made up of Ricardo Energy and Environment, Wales Council for Voluntary Action, Regen, GEP Environmental, Awel Aman Tawe and Ecodyfi.
The full annual report can be accessed here, or watch the video below.
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