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Nine public buildings in Edinburgh set for 24% reduction in energy costs

Edinburgh's Usher Hall is among nine buildings which will receive energy efficiency measures resulting in a energy cost reduction of 24%.

Edinburgh's Usher Hall is among nine buildings which will receive energy efficiency measures resulting in a energy cost reduction of 24%.

Nine buildings in Edinburgh will see their energy costs reduced by almost a quarter after undergoing energy efficiency upgrades as part of a new contract signed between E.ON's energy efficiency specialists Matrix and the City Council.

The £2.1 million scheme is taking place at council buildings across the city, including seven schools, the Usher Hall and the City Chambers. It is designed to cut energy consumption across all the sites, saving over £330,000 and reducing energy costs by 24%.

The contract is due for delivery between by July 2017 and will see Matrix install energy efficiency measures including upgraded Building Energy Management Systems (BeMS), more efficient lighting and equipment upgrades, remote monitoring of heating and ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems.

Four of the schools under the framework, which have swimming pools, will receive new combined heat and power (CHP) engines, allowing them to generate their own electrical and heating needs on-site.

The project is being carried out as part of Edinburgh Council's Sustainable Energy Action Plan, which aims to reduce carbon emissions across the city by over 40% by 2020.

Councillor Lesley Hinds, Convenor of Transport and Environment Committee, said: "Energy efficiency is a key programme within our Sustainable Energy Action Plan. We are delighted to be able to partner with E.ON in the development of projects that will result in more energy efficient buildings delivering a number of benefits to the Council and its staff. 

It is being funded mainly through the Salix scheme, which provides interest free energy efficiency loans to the public sector, while E.ON will guarantee the energy savings from the implementation of a number of energy conservation measures.

As part of the project, awarded under the Greater London Authority's RE:FIT framework, the planned measures are expected to pay for themselves in eight years.

Dave Lewis, managing director of Matrix, said: "Edinburgh is looking to significantly reduce its carbon emissions and energy costs by 2020.  The scope, scale and complexity of solutions we can offer customers will certainly help them on that journey, saving them on their energy and maintenance costs which can then be reinvested for the benefit of local residents. “

The company is already in talks with Edinburgh City Council to deliver a second phase of work to achieve further carbon and financial savings.

The work is part of an ongoing programme supported by the Scottish government, which has made millions of pounds available to both the public and private sectors since making energy efficiency a national infrastructure priority in June 2015.