Planning Application 181642
New Warehousing unit at Units 31-33 (Unit D) Suttons Business Park
Comments from ACER, The Whitegates Residents Association
ACER wishes to Comment on this Application
ACER is concerned that the opportunity to build a carbon neutral building in respect of energy running costs is being missed due to the developer meeting the low carbon recovery threshold set by WBC policy CC05, when a 100% energy recovery is achievable at a small percentage increase in capital cost to the development.
ACER wishes to bring the following points to your attention:
- The use of good insulation materials and thermally efficient glass is noted.
- The use of energy efficient led lighting throughout the property is commended.
- The use of modern air source heat pumps for heating and cooling is commended.
- The 10% total carbon offset requirement for heating, lighting and hot water is stated as 11,813 KgCO2 as stated on page 9 of the ‘Energy Statement’ document submitted with the plans.
- Photo-voltaic (PV) solar panels plus an evacuated tube hot water solar array are considered by the consultant to be the best solution to meet the 10% carbon offset contribution stipulated by WBC policy CC05. The hot water array of 32 square metres contributes 2,336 Kg CO2 offset and the 32Kw PV panels 9589 KgCO2 offset.
- To put these figures into perspective, the typical after-market solar installation on domestic properties is 4Kw, i.e. for this large industrial property with a roof many times bigger than a house, the proposal for solar panels is only eight times bigger than would be installed on a typical house, to offset 10% of the energy needs to keep the premises ticking over. The proposal states 32square metres of Evacuated tube, plus the PV panels generating 32Kw would take up 96 square meters i.e. a total of 128square metres proposed. The roof area available is 6,000 square metres (120m x 50m). It is clear that the potential for significantly more solar energy exists on this site which could provide a carbon offset greater than 100%, not 10% as proposed
- If we add a typical 30Kw of tenant’s equipment (as stated in Application 171903 for a similar development on units 62-64), we then see that the actual contribution of additional panels could offset all of the total energy used in the working building. It should be noted that tenants equipment energy use from their machinery, computers etc., is evidently NOT required to be taken into consideration by WBC policy CC05.
- The opportunity to install a significantly larger solar panel system on such a large roof exists.
- The opportunity to market and rent such an energy neutral building would surely be prestigious to Standard Life and attractive to potential tenants who could be charged a small premium to offset the additional cost involved.
In summary, the existing proposal has good energy underpinnings with the potential to have a 100% energy offset from solar panels on the large warehouse roof. This common- sense approach would bring prestige to WBC and Standard Life and would please many residents as well.