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Aberdeen firm powers its way to global green award
24/09/13Aberdeen Heat and Power has become the first British company to win a Global District Energy Climate Award.
The firm, set up by Aberdeen City Council in 2002, has been awarded the prestigious international Global District Energy Award of Excellence for Small and Medium Companies. It is one of only a small handful of European businesses to have achieved this global recognition.
A panel of energy experts from across the world recognised the significant achievements made by the company, which has taken hundreds of people out of fuel poverty and significantly cut the city's carbon emissions.
Michael King, a member of the Aberdeen Heat and Power board, and Council Leader Councillor Barney Crockett received the award at a ceremony, which took place during the District Energy Climate Summit in New York.
Councillor Crockett and Mr King were invited to take on the role of panellists in the world conference, reflecting the international impact Aberdeen is making on the energy development front.
Aberdeen Heat and Power has been bringing low-carbon, affordable warmth to the residents and businesses of Aberdeen including council tenants and private householders in multi-storey flats, sheltered housing complexes and public buildings for the past 11 years. It has been used as a case study by the WWF.
General manager Ian Booth said: "Aberdeen Heat and Power works closely with Aberdeen City Council and is absolutely delighted to have won this award. It has won other significant awards in the past but this is the biggest and it's a real honour to receive such recognition for the district heating scheme."
Mr King said: "The provision of heat through district heating has, to date, not been the traditional approach in Scotland and the wider UK. So we are honoured that Aberdeen Heat and Power has been recognised alongside projects from other countries where it is well established.
"We believe this award validates our efforts over the past decade and hope that it will inspire other towns and cities to follow our example in securing low-carbon, affordable warmth for their residents, businesses and institutions."
Councillor Crockett said: "Aberdeen Heat and Power is a true success story in every sense. The company's combined heat and power scheme has taken hundreds of people in Aberdeen out of fuel poverty by providing affordable heat in many homes, and simultaneously making significant cuts to the city's carbon output."
More than half the energy we use for heating and cooling is wasted. The fundamental idea of district energy is simple reusing/ recycling surplus energy which could otherwise be wasted.
District energy systems are key to reducing carbon dioxide emissions and increasing energy efficiency in cities and communities.
The focus of the Global District Energy Awards is on:
identifying and recognising systems that illustrate the overall importance of district energy in providing sustainable energy solutions;
providing a global benchmark for environmental excellence; and
offering a platform for sharing successful ideas and efforts, and encouraging further interest in district energy.
Councillor Crockett added: "The company has won several prestigious awards and is very well respected across not only Scotland and the UK, but clearly also on an international level.
"Aberdeen is already renowned as a world-leading energy city as a result of its thriving oil and gas industry, and as an aspiring leader in the hydrogen and renewable energy fields."
He added: "Aberdeen Heat and Power winning a Global District Energy Award of Excellence shines the international spotlight on another area in which Aberdeen is leading the way in energy production and use using combined head and power plants to power district heating networks. This is a tremendous accolade for all those involved in Aberdeen Heat and Power who have achieved something really quite remarkable and brought a global focus onto Aberdeen.
"The award is also very timeous. It comes as Aberdeen Heat and Power prepares to launch a subsidiary company, District Energy Aberdeen Limited (DEAL) which will target the commercial sector, increasing the reach of Aberdeen Heat and Power and bringing in more funds to enable it to further develop the district heating network in the city. I am quite sure that this award will raise the profile of the new company and help it to secure business."
During the summit, Councillor Crockett and Mr King were invited to attend a number of events as part of the District Energy Climate summit, including a symposium on district energy and combined heat and power, and to participate in a panel discussion entitled Public and Private Partnerships Perspectives on Moving the Needle, which focused on how public/private partnerships and collaboration can produce measurable economic and environmental benefits.