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Government Announces £553m of Investment to Upgrade Public Buildings

Government Announces £553m of Investment to Upgrade Public Buildings
24 May 2022 | Updated 26 May 2022

Hundreds of public buildings in England will cut their use of fossil fuels and advance towards low carbon heating and energy efficiency upgrades, thanks to £553 million in government funding.

Hospitals, schools, libraries, museums and leisure centres will be among the buildings to receive upgraded heating systems under phase three of the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme.

This scheme supports the aim of reducing emissions from public sector buildings by 75 per cent, compared to 2017 levels, by 2037.

The government estimates that local authorities, public bodies and taxpayers will save an average of £650 million per year on energy bills over the next 15 years, thanks to this funding.

Guidance on how to apply for the next round of applications to the scheme, Phase 3b, will be published in July.


Phase Three of Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme


The first round of funding will provide grants to 160 public sector organisations across the country to install low carbon heating systems, including heat pumps and electric heating, with many projects also fitting energy efficiency measures such as wall and roof insulation, double glazing and LED lighting, and renewables such as solar panels.

Greater Manchester Combined Authority is receiving £15.5 million to install low carbon heating in locations such as including Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service, the University of Salford, the National Football Museum and Manchester University.

Leeds City Council is receiving £4.3 million to decarbonise 6 primary schools and 4 child daycare centres

Birmingham Women’s and Children’s NHS Foundation Trust is receiving more than £50 million to install clean heating and energy efficiency measures in Birmingham Women’s Hospital and Birmingham Children’s Hospital.

Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust will be awarded £32 million to decarbonise New Cross Hospital.

Business and Energy Minister Lord Callanan said: “Using cleaner technology to heat our civic buildings is helping to shield public sector organisations from costly fossil fuels, especially at a time of high global prices.

“This funding will bring significant savings for taxpayers of well over half a billion pounds each year by making public buildings cheaper to run, heat and cool, whilst supporting economic growth and jobs across the country.”


Decarbonising Heritage Buildings


The scheme will also contribute to several heritage projects in English listed buildings, including Hartismere Family of Schools, which will receive more than £600,000 to install a heat pump and improve the energy efficiency of Somerleyton Primary School in Suffolk, a school which was built in 1845 and still has a thatched roof.

Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew, will invest over £4.4 million to decarbonise the Grade II listed Nash Conservatory and Jodrell Laboratory, whilst Exmoor National Park Authority is receiving £115,000 to install clean heating at Pinkery Outdoor Education Centre, which is off-grid and has no mains gas, electricity or water.


Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme Funding Broken Down by Region


The regional funding breakdown for this round of Phase 3 is as follows:


  • West Midlands: £133.9 million
  • East Midlands: £103.9 million
  • London: £90.8 million
  • North West: £51.8 million
  • South West: £29.9 million
  • South East: £55.6 million
  • East of England: £29.8 million
  • North East: £5.8 million
  • Yorkshire & the Humber: £42.9 million


Picture: a photograph of the exterior of a hospital building, with a sign showing the words "emergency". Image Credit: Pexels

Article written by Ella Tansley | Published 24 May 2022


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