metro commercial blog

News and opinion on commercial property, energy efficiency in buildings and the environment, legislation and other loosely related topics we find of interest.

Zero-emission aviation project takes off at Orkney's Kirkwall Airport

Zero-Emission-Aviation-Project-Takes-off-in-Orkney Zero emission aviation project takes off at Orkneys

Internal flights between the Orkney Islands are to become greener. A recently launched eighteen-month project will test various low carbon emission aircraft on short routes between the islands. The aircraft power sources will include hydrogen fuel cells, batteries, and sustainable aviation fuels. The project will also assess the feasibility of using drones for delivering medical supplies.

These trials are part of a broader plan announced by the Scottish Government to create "UK's first operationally-based, low-carbon aviation test centre" based at Orkney's Kirkwall Airport. The project, acronym SATE (Sustainable Aviation Test Environment), includes a large consortium of players from various sectors, including academia, industry specialists, local businesses, and the public sector.

Scotland's Michael Matheson, the Transport Secretary for Scotland, said that the project formed a significant step in Scotland's plan to decarbonise scheduled passenger flights within the country by 2040.
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Scottish New Build Heat Standard

New-Build-Heat-Standard

Scotland is making substantial inroads in decarbonisation and tackling climate change. The country aims to reduce greenhouse gasses emissions to net-zero by 2045 and reduce them by 15% by 2030. Already 90% of Scotland's electricity supply is from renewables, and, encouraged by current progress, the Scottish Government is now focusing on reducing emissions from heating buildings and is heavily targeting new buildings.

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Lendlease Sets Out an Ambitious Roadmap to an Absolute Zero Built Environment by 2040

lendlease-absolute-zero-carbon-blo_20201228-200108_1

Lendlease Europe has recently set out a bold plan to achieve zero carbon emissions from the fuel we burn by 2025 and absolute zero-carbon without using offsets by 2040. Here we will look at how the company intends to achieve these targets and examine some of their key milestones. 

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E.ON converts natural gas pipeline in Germany to pure hydrogen

Hydrogen for heating E.ON converts natural gas pipeline to hydrogen for heating

Replacing natural gas by hydrogen for heating domestic residential and commercial buildings would have a massive impact on greenhouse gas emissions and reducing global warming. There is, of course, the important caveat that the hydrogen manufacture must be powered by renewable resources. There is no fundamental reason why this cannot be achieved, but there are significant challenges in doing so. 

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Fife homes to be heated by world-first green hydrogen heating network

Metro-Blog-hydrogen-gas-networks-text Hydrogen network for Fife homes

If we could replace our standard central heating systems with a carbon-free solution, we would have the potential to reduce UK greenhouse gas emissions by as much as a third. Source: OFGEM. This would go a long way towards meeting the UK and Scottish governments net-zero targets. One solution is to replace natural gas-fired boilers with hydrogen fired boilers and produce the hydrogen using renewable resources. 

Such a solution is precisely what gas distributor SGN is planning to do in its H100 Fife project in Levenmouth. The aim is to manufacture the hydrogen at an electrolysis plant powered by an offshore wind turbine. The gas will then be stored safely and transported through a network to provide fuel for heating homes. 
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Emerging from lockdown - re-occupying commercial buildings

Emerging-from-lockdown Safely re-occupying commercial buildings
As the UK and devolved governments continue to provide a phased exit strategy from Covid-19 lockdown, businesses and institutions must emerge safely and in line with the latest public health advice. The Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) has published a set of guidelines on how we can accomplish this. H...
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Geoengineering - can it help address climate change?

Geoengineering-ClimateChange An alternative to reducing CO2 emissions and energy use?

"When a weather-controlling satellite system suddenly breaks down, a scientist must race against the clock to prevent a climate cataclysm on Earth." Geostorm - Currently on Netflix

You may be confused but this is not a film review! During the recent lockdown some may have watched the film Geostorm on Netflix. Essentially the film is an action and adventure sci-fi fantasy film loosely based on geoengineering. The idea being that if the climate of the planet gets out of control we can fix it through large scale intervention of the earths climate system by using satellites. It got me interested in the science behind geoengineering and large scale climate intervention and whether this might be an easier option than reducing CO2 emissions the energy efficiency route.

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The coronavirus pandemic and climate change

Coronavirus-and-Climate-Change-Web The coronavirus pandemic and climate change-what have we learned?

The skies are bluer, there are virtually no con-trails creating cloud cover, and the air smells so much cleaner. It's just like the olden days that our grandparents would wax nostalgically about. Doubtless, the shutdown has improved air quality in our cities, and the effect is global. But is it just a blip or will it have a long term impact on health and climate change? 

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CO2 emissions from cement production - a new net-zero ready mixed product

CO2-emissions-from-cement-production CO2 emissions from cement production
 A new net-zero ready mixed cement product Concrete is the most important structural material in the world. A composite material made from cement, aggregates such as gravel, sand and rock, along with water, humankind has been using it since the times of the ancient Egyptians. However, behind concrete's many benefits lurk massive dangers t...
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Climate Change in Rich Countries

Climate-change-in-rich-countries Climate change in rich countries
While extreme weather events have their most significant impact on poorer vulnerable countries, rich countries are experiencing the effects of climate change to an increasing extent. The exposure and vulnerability of countries to extreme events are indicated by the Global Climate Risk Index (CRI) published by Germanwatch. This focusses on both fatalities and economic losses. Perhaps surprisingly, some of the world's richest countries appear high on that list. For instance. For the year 2018, Germany, Europe's most prosperous country, was ranked third on the CRI scale, Japan and The Philippines filling slots one and two respectively.
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Decarbonising gas - a solution to meeting zero-emission targets

Decarbonising Gas A solution to meeting zero-emission targets
​The UK Government has committed to net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 with the Scottish Government having committed to become net zero by 2045. This includes decarbonising heating and hot water generation, which currently account for around a third of UK's total greenhouse gas emissions. There are two feasible options: full electrification of all h...
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"Flying Shame" and the CO2 savings when choosing alternative travel

AirFlight-flightshame Flight Shame - Reducing CO2?
In addition to new regulations for reducing energy use and CO2 generated as a result of operating existing buildings,  air travel is also attracting a  lot of attention so much so that the term "flying shame" has been coined recently with pressure for consumers to reduce flying. Whilst we usually consider CO2 reduction in buildings&n...
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Improving air quality in urban areas

Air quality in cities: Vehicle emissions and Low Emission Zones  It is not only buildings that are being required to improve their environmental credentials with many councils across the UK having introduced low emission zones (LEZ) for all but the latest combustion engine vehicles. In London an Ultra zone Emission Zone has been intr...
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936 Hits

Residential buildings in Scotland: Minimum energy efficiency standards update

As previously reported, a consultation was carried out by the Scottish Government to investigate improving the energy efficiency of the private sector residential stock. Some of the key questions and statements made are as follows. Responses to this consultation have been collected and are being reviewed by the Scottish Government. Some o...
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Scottish consultation on minimum energy efficiency for residential property

Scottish-Consultation-on-Energy-Efficiency-and-minimum-regulations-in-private-rented-residential-property
Minimum energy efficiency for residential property  The Scottish Government intend to introduce minimum energy efficiency standards for private rented residential property to Scotland, similar to that due to be introduced in England and Wales through Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards (MEES) in England and Wales. The Scott...
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Solar photovoltaic revolution - PV's take centre stage in worlds energy economy

PV-solar-world-economy
The world is bathed in energy beamed directly from our sun. The energy content of solar radiation is sufficient to supply all the planet's power requirements multiple times over. Unlike coal and other fossil fuels, the sun's energy will never run out. It is also entirely non-polluting, and doesn't result in carbon dioxide emissions. But converting ...
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The UKs largest shopping centre Photovoltaic (PV) system

The UKs largest shopping centre Photovoltaic (PV) system
​The owners of the The Galleries Shopping Centre in Tyne & Weir have announced they will install the UK's largest shopping centre photovoltaic (PV) system on the roof. They say the system will comprise 1,317 individual photovoltaic panels, covering an area of 41,000 sq ft – equivalent to a professional football pitch - on an othe...
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Minimum Energy Efficiency Requirements in England & Wales

Minimum Energy Efficiency Requirements in England & Wales

The Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England and Wales) Regulations 2015

These Regulations introduce measures to improve the energy efficiency of certain private rented property in England and Wales.

It provides that, the landlord of a non-domestic private rented property must not grant a new tenancy of the property after 1st April 2018, and must not continue to let the property after 1st April 2023, where the energy performance of the property is below the minimum level.). It prescribes a minimum level of energy efficiency for private rented properties: that is, is an energy performance indicator (evidenced on the energy performance certificate for the property) of band E.

This legislation is triggered by new leases and lease renewals although not sales.

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2492 Hits

Latest UK Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Latest UK Greenhouse Gas Emissions

These are the latest greenhouse gas emissions as of 2015.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) released the greenhouse gas emissions for 2010 during February 2012. In 2010, UK emissions of the basket of six greenhouse gases covered by the Kyoto Protocol were estimated to be 590.4 million tonnes carbon dioxide equivalent (MtCO2e). This was 3.1% higher than the 2009 figure of 572.5 million tonnes.

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Minimum energy efficiency requirements for UK property

The Energy Act 2011 along with the Climate Change (Scotland) Act 2009 has introduced the reality of minimum energy efficiency standards for properties in the England and Wales and perhaps Scotland.

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30175 Hits

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