Castle Rock Edinvar Housing Association, together with project partner Changeworks, has received a £415,000 grant award from the second round of the Scottish Government’s Decarbonisation Fund. The money will be used to retrofit electric battery storage and solar panels in 80 homes in a project that could see the technology specified as standard to meet energy efficiency standards in future homes.

A warm home that feels safe and secure

Housing Minister Kevin Stewart visited the housing association’s homes at the Thistle Foundation in Edinburgh to see the battery storage and solar panels that will be used. He said: “A warm home that feels safe and secure gives people a greater sense of wellbeing. That is why we are working to remove poor energy efficiency as a driver of fuel poverty and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

“Social landlords are making excellent progress towards achieving the first Energy Efficiency Standard Social Standard for Housing, reporting that 85% of social rented homes already meet it and projecting 89% compliance by the 2020 milestone.  

“This funding will help further landlords’ progress, encouraging innovative approaches and ideas.”

Low carbon living

Castle Rock Edinvar technology and innovation lead Ben Dyer, said: “Electrical storage has a significant part to play in the de-carbonisation of the national grid and increasing the potential of variable renewable generation”.

“We will explore the opportunity to provide a flexible electricity tariff for our tenants, tackling fuel poverty and further maximising the benefits of domestic battery storage. Residents who do not have a technical capacity for solar PV could benefit from battery technology, allowing a shared benefit.”

Changeworks technical director Paul Thom, said: “Changeworks is pleased to be bringing our experience and track record in delivering low carbon living to this innovative project which should deliver significant cost and carbon savings for tenants. As part of the delivery we will carry out full monitoring and evaluation to explore the impact of the technologies and the outcomes for tenants. We look forward to sharing this knowledge with registered social landlords and stakeholders to build on this scheme, and others like it across the country.”

The proposed battery storage for the project is approximately 4.5kWh per property, totalling 675kWh. The combined technology will provide significant gains in the SAP Score/Rating and reductions in the Carbon Score for each property. The project will provide an early learning model for the social housing sector to consider as it works towards EESSH2 and its role in delivering an Energy Efficient Scotland.

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