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Proposals To Install Solar Panels On Council Buildings

We are hearing of numerous solar panel projects being undertaken by local councils on an increasing number of occasions as they seek to make sure they achieve their renewable energy targets.

Bradford City Hall
(image credit: Neil T)

Bradford Council are set to install solar panels on two of their major office buildings in the coming months that will help them towards hitting their 2020 target to produce 20 per cent of their energy via renewable sources.

It is hoped that the Britannia House and Jacob’s Well council buildings will have thermal and photovoltaic panels installed to produce hot water and electricity by March 2013.

It is forecast that the installation costs for the Britannia House project will be £63,000 but the savings are expected to amount to £10,000 per annum. Jacob’s Well’s installation figures are not yet known for definite.

Bradford Council hopes to speed up a scheme costing £1.2 million to utilise the water flow on the River Aire at a weir that is close to Roberts Park, Bialdon that would be capable of generating 371,000 KWh of electricity per annum. The scheme will incorporate a fish pass as well as the Archimedes Screw-type turbine.

Collectively, these projects together with what is already in place and other planned schemes plus the biomass boilers that are used to produce heat for the likes of Ilkley Town Hall and Bradford City Hall may provide as much as 14 per cent of Bradford Council’s energy needs by 2015.

Councillor Andrew Thornton, who is responsible for the council’s environmental matters said:  “The idea is to move more people into better and more efficient facilities. This along with the hydro scheme at Roberts Park will get us further towards our 20 per cent goal. “

The Council had solar panels installed on Bradford Industrial Museum and St James Wholesale Market in 2012 with the 450 solar panel installation at the market costing £125,000. These panels are capable of powering 40 houses and the installation costs should be re-covered in around 10 years. The costs at the market scheme were shared between the Market Traders Association and Bradford Council. One hundred solar panels were installed in October 2012 at the museum and should be capable of providing 10 per cent of the electricity requirements of the museum plus producing some income through the feed in tariff scheme.

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