ADG Architects Design Group Plymouth Architecture Design Graphics

Don’t waste your energy…

The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) released a report recently that confirmed the steady growth of the renewable energy production in the UK. This now accounts for 30% of the total energy generated in the UK. This is only 7% behind Germany who have been described as the worlds first major renewable energy economy so as a nation we have been making good progress over the last decade. 

At ADG we are doing our best to support this progress by discussing renewable energy options with our clients at an early stage of the design process when formulating their Strategic Project Brief. We always take a fabric first approach that ensures our designers are aiming high when looking at the range of energy efficient options for the building construction. Maximising the performance of the components and materials before considering the use of mechanical or electrical services is always the best plan. Harnessing the sun’s energy and maximising airtightness will create low energy buildings that will require less energy to operate in addition to making a more comfortable environment. 

We have recently been working on a number of Fire Stations and have just submitted a Planning Application for the Camels Head Station in Plymouth. This building is to be completely refurbished and overclad. It has a 1950,s concrete frame and presents a lot of challenging details that require resolution in order to vastly improve the energy efficiency of the structure. The building services can then be recalibrated with significantly lower demands. The existing oil fired boilers and radiators will be decommissioned in favour of air source heat pumps and solar panels. Our aim for the Fire and Rescue Service is to make the buildings carbon emissions 20% lower than Part L of the Building Regulations, to reduce the buildings annual operating costs and deliver a sustainable and controllable environment for management and training. 

A recent seminar I attended by a Building Services consultant boldly stated that the future would be all electric. With the take up of electric cars, the improvements in battery technology and the increase in energy efficiency of many appliances, they may well be correct. Some national operators are already convinced about the benefits of this approach. The Gyle Premier Inn at Edinburgh Park has a 5 tonne 3m cubed lithium ion battery storage system and they will save £20,000 a year on their energy bill. 

I wonder if you get a reduction on your bill?

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