Published 12 November 2021

West Dunbartonshire Council hosted members of the Danish Parliament this week as part of their COP26 visit to Scotland.

The Danish Parliamentary Climate and Energy Committee met with Council Leader Councillor Jonathan McColl as well as Bailie Denis Agnew, West Dunbartonshire Energy board member Councillor Daniel Lennie, and officers involved in delivering and operating the Energy Centre to hear about the technology and its impact on the Council’s carbon footprint.

The five parliamentarians were given a walking tour of the facility, which takes water from the Clyde and uses it to create heat for homes and public buildings in the vicinity.

They also took part in a round-table discussion about the benefits of the system and its operation.

Speaking at the event on Thursday (11 November), Council Leader Councillor Jonathan McColl said: “It was fantastic to welcome the Danish Climate and Energy Committee to showcase our energy centre and share our experience on what is possible to achieve with this type of system.

“During COP26 when the eyes of the world are on Scotland, I’m proud that West Dunbartonshire Council is leading the way to net zero with a district heating system that helps combat climate change, but will also benefit the Clydebank community.”

The Energy Centre, which has been operational for a year, has been a popular destination for delegates and journalists visiting Glasgow for the climate summit, as an example of a pioneering step towards net zero.

The large-scale heat pump system, which was recently named as project of the year at the European Heat Pump Awards, is the first of its kind in the UK.

The system will deliver circa 2000 tonnes of carbon reduction from the environment per year, and is contributing to making Clydebank one of the greenest areas in Scotland.

Since switching on in December last year, the energy centre supplies heat through 5km of below-ground pipework to Council offices at Aurora House, the Titan Enterprise Centre, Clydebank Leisure Centre and the new care home at the site, Queens Quay House.

Pipework is also in place to supply the forthcoming Clydebank Health Centre, over 140 flats and retail units currently on site, all other homes planned for the site as well as Clydebank Library and Clydebank Town Hall.

The low carbon system has been designed on a modular basis to enable future expansion beyond Queens Quay, with scope to heat the Golden Jubilee Hospital, Clyde Shopping Centre and into the town centre.

The introduction of the network will make a major contribution towards the Council's climate change targets, as well as allowing residents of more than 1000 homes due to be built on the site to enjoy lower bills with a system that requires far less upkeep than a gas boiler.

Rasmus Helveg Petersen, Chair of the Danish Parliament's Committee on Climate, Energy and Utilities, said: "We are delighted to visit Clydebank Energy Centre and to see what they are achieving with district heating.

“District heating provides cheap and reliable heating, with a very low carbon footprint.

“District heating is widespread in Denmark, thus contributing to our climate goals.

“We have been excited to share experiences with West Dunbartonshire Council representative, Councillor Jonathan McColl, and we are happy to see how it contributes to reach their climate goals."