Midlothian Council and Vattenfall JV to invest £100m in low carbon heating

Midlothian Energy Limited aims to provide low carbon heat to 170,000 homes in the Midlothian and Edinburgh region by 2050

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A 50/50 joint venture between Midlothian Council and Vattenfall Heat UK is embarking on a long term plan to invest £100 million in low carbon heating over the next five years.

Midlothian Energy Limited will explore possibilities to capture waste heat from industrial processes to supply customers via new district heating networks.

The initial heating network will supply around 3,000 homes, education and retail properties at Shawfair Town, north of the Midlothian Council, with low carbon heating to homes by 2024.

the project, which will benefit from up to £7.3 million from the Scottish Government, is expected to save more than 2,500 tonnes of CO2 per year – equivalent to taking 1,200 cars off the road.

Waste heat from Millerhill recycling and energy recovery centre (RERC), operated by FCC Environment, will be supplemented with other waste heat sources, such as mine workings and sewers, to provide low carbon heat to around 30,000 homes over five years and 170,000 homes in the Midlothian and Edinburgh region by 2050.

Eoghan Maguire, Head of Joint Ventures at Vattenfall and Director of Midlothian Energy Limited said: “Meeting Scotland’s ambitious target of reaching net zero by 2045 means collaborations like this are crucial. Midlothian Energy will provide a huge step forward on the road to reducing the use of fossil fuels in heating and we expect up to 900 jobs to be created through the heat networks Vattenfall is proposing in Scotland.

Vattenfall delivers heat to 1.9 million customers across Europe and has similar ambitions for the UK. In suitable urban and suburban areas, district heating can be deployed rapidly, at scale and at affordable cost to consumers. The UK simply cannot reach net zero without it.”