Council considers re-using energy from crematorium to
heat adjacent leisure centre
Innovative proposals from Redditch Borough Council were
presented today which would see energy re-used from its crematorium
to heat a large part of the Council's adjacent Abbey Stadium
The Council Leader, Cllr Carole Gandy, officers and a technical
consultant presented the full proposals at a press briefing in
Redditch Town Hall, following worldwide interest in the project
over the past few days.
The proposals come as the Council investigates ways of reducing
CO2 (carbon dioxide) emissions and meeting the energy
needs of its new leisure centre due to open in spring 2012.
Cllr Gandy said: "With the Abbey Stadium Leisure Centre
development adjacent to Redditch's Crematorium, and in line with
the Council's commitment to efficient energy use, there is the
potential to transfer almost 100 per cent of the energy generated
from the flue gas cleaning process at the crematorium, which would
otherwise be wasted. This would then heat a large part of the whole
Leisure Centre. Solar thermal hot water systems are also agreed for
the new centre.
"Carrying out the project would cost £39,000 but would mean we
are offsetting the demand for mains natural gas for the new centre
by 42 per cent over the course of a year, giving a financial saving
of £14,560 per year, which means the investment would have paid for
itself in four years. In addition, doing this means we avoid
needing to install a CHP (Combined Heat and Power) unit, which
would cost us £100,000. Therefore, we instantly save £61,000 .The
savings can then be spent on other key Council services.
"The use of waste heat energy in this way is good practice and
very innovative. It would genuinely be a first in the UK and
demonstrates Redditch Borough Council's seriousness about
addressing climate change issues, especially reducing its reliance
on fossil fuels, and reducing the borough's carbon footprint.
"The Council fully appreciates this is a sensitive matter for
many people but recommends, while remaining respectful of the
bereavement process, the plans are supported to help tackle the
pressing challenges of CO2 emissions and climatic
change, and to help reduce the high energy bills that are a
necessary feature of running a modern leisure centre.
"The Council is genuinely keen to hear the views of people on
this matter prior to a final decision being made and is grateful
for all the feedback received so far, the majority of which are in
support of the proposal."
Redditch Borough Council is already in the process of upgrading
crematorium equipment to reduce harmful mercury emissions into the
atmosphere in response to EU legislation.
In order to abate (or capture) mercury and other acids and
particulates from flue gases, the gases need cleaning. To do this,
the flue gases need to be cooled with cold water from around 800
degrees centigrade to around 140 to 160 degrees centigrade,
creating a significant heat loss which without energy recovery,
would simply be exhausted into the sky.
Councillor Gandy added: "The `waste of heat` has long been
considered nonsensical on the Continent and planning permission for
new crematoria often insists that the waste heat is used at a
suitable adjacent development. The technology is simple and the
science involved is trusted.
"This Council has long encouraged residents to be prudent with
their own resources, for example by insulating their homes, so it
believes it is correct to investigate the potential for re-using
waste heat in this way."
In the UK, Warwick District Council and several other councils
are already using waste heat from the abatement process to warm
their chapels and crematoria buildings rather than release waste
heat into the atmosphere, although only a small proportion of the
available waste heat is actually used.
Several councillors and staff have been to see how the waste
heat is re-used at Oakley Wood Crematorium at Bishops Tachbrook
near Leamington Spa owned by Warwick District Council, and were
reassured that there is no actual change to the cremation process
Borough councillors are due to discuss the proposal at their
Executive Committee on Tuesday 1st
February and at Full Council on Monday
7th February. The committee report can now be