£5.2m landmark decarbonisation housing project gets go-ahead

Housing Wed, May 5, 2021 4:19 PM

IRT Surveys, one of the fastest growing thermal imaging survey companies in Europe, in conjunction with partners SMS plc and Robertson Group, has secured a £5.2m project with Aberdeen City Council to deliver a major decarbonisation retrofit scheme across 100 social housing properties.

The landmark energy efficiency project, which is backed by the Government’s newly launched Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund Demonstrator, continues a long-term partnership between IRT Surveys and Aberdeen Council that spans 20 years.

In that time IRT Surveys has thermally imaged the Council’s entire social housing portfolio of 22,000 homes, helping to diagnose building defects, energy inefficiencies and demonstrate a viable route to net-zero carbon emissions for landlords, whilst also reducing fuel poverty amongst residents.

Following a successful bid to the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS), IRT Surveys will now deliver a programme of fabric upgrades and renewable energy technologies across 100 homes as part of the multi-million pound innovation project.

The decarbonisation scheme will see IRT Surveys work with Aberdeen City Council to deliver a programme of low-carbon generation, and energy efficiency innovations, that aim to demonstrate decarbonisation potential for the Council’s social housing stock, at the same time as also improving comfort and lowering energy costs for residents.

Leading edge technologies including solar panels, batteries, and heat pumps to remove the consumption of carbon intensive fuels will be deployed, alongside a behind-the-meter battery storage system to create a decarbonised neighbourhood.

As part of the project’s ‘fabric-first, whole-home’ approach, IRT Surveys’ thermal imaging technology identifies where fabric improvements are required to reduce space heating demand.

Implementing these fabric upgrades, in tandem with the installation of renewable energy assets, the project showcases a route to achieving net-zero emissions through a financed and scalable business model.

The installation phase of the scheme is scheduled for completion in December 2021, after which the energy performance of the 100 homes will be re-surveyed and monitored for a period of six months to demonstrate concept efficacy.

Stewart Little, CEO of IRT Surveys, said: “We are delighted to have been appointed for this landmark project with Aberdeen City Council, a scheme which we are pleased to say has received Government support through the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund Demonstrator.

“The urgency of the climate crisis means it is vital that we address all carbon impacts from buildings including the UK’s social housing stock. By working alongside Aberdeen City Council, and our delivery partners SMS and Robertson Group, we will develop an intelligent, scalable model that will help decarbonise the Council’s extensive housing portfolio in ways that are both commercially viable and affordable for residents.”

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