Clyde Mission: energy masterplan

This masterplan will support the strategic development of low carbon heat and energy infrastructure projects that align to the goals of the Clyde Mission. It aims to support the identification and development of a portfolio of heat and energy related investment opportunities in within the CM area.

1 Executive Summary


Clyde Mission aims to make the Clyde "an engine of sustainable, inclusive economicgrowth for the city, the region and Scotland". The five Missions intended to deliver against this "Grand Challenge" are:

  • Create new, good and green jobs and a workforce with the skills to secure those jobs
  • Use vacant and derelict land for the benefit of the economy, the environment and communities.
  • Adapt to climate risks, especially flooding.
  • Accelerate Scotland's progress to net zero.
  • Use the river to create better places for people and communities

This Energy Masterplan was commissioned for Clyde Mission by Zero Waste Scotland to support the strategic development of low carbon heat and energy infrastructure projects that align to the goals of the Clyde Mission. It also supports wider strategic Scottish Government targets such as reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 75% by 2030 and achieving net zero by 2045.

The Energy Masterplan aims to support the identification and development of a portfolio of heat and energy related investment opportunities within a subset of the Clyde Mission boundary[1] ("the Energy Masterplan boundary") which have the potential to contribute to the aims of Clyde Mission, deliver an economic stimulus and contribute to the National Outcomes set out in Scotland's National Performance Framework (NPF).[2]

The Energy Masterplan outlines a list of potential and actual projects at various stages of development, these were identified through stakeholder engagement, energy mapping, and modelling. A further shortlisting process, which considered the specific ambitions of Clyde Mission (as outlined above) identified four early stage projects to take forward to detailed feasibility studies.

The Energy Masterplan includes both sides of the River Clyde from the tidal reach near Clyde Gateway in the East of Glasgow, through to the opening of the river between Gourock and Dunoon. The Energy Masterplan boundary is approximately 500 m from the North and South banks of the River Clyde. An additional 2,000 m buffer was included to support the potential for future extensions of successful low carbon energy and infrastructure projects. The Energy Masterplan should be viewed as a resource to support investment in low carbon heating and energy infrastructure in the Energy Masterplan area.

The Energy Masterplan presents:

  • The Energy Masterplan area and boundary, including a buffer for future project expansion
  • Existing energy demand locations (heating, cooling, and power) as well as existing sources of low-carbon energy
  • Low carbon and energy infrastructure technologies suitable for the area
  • Energy project long list, including:
    • Stakeholder-proposed projects.
    • Heat demand clusters and the spatial relationship of the clusters to the stakeholder-proposed projects.
    • Low carbon heat and energy resource opportunities and high-level constraints.
  • Highlighted pre-feasibility projects which could potentially proceed to the feasibility study stage.

Key Findings

The energy mapping work examined existing energy demands including heating, cooling, and power in the Energy Masterplan area, along with relevant energy supply opportunities and constraints. It also identified heat demand clusters which could potentially support the development of district energy networks.

Within the extended (2,500m) Energy Masterplan boundary, there are 317,540 domestic properties and 36,245 non-domestic properties with a total heat demand estimated to be 7,117 GWh/a. Notably, 41% of the domestic properties on the Home Analytics database have an EPC Band D or below. This highlights the extent of the challenge associated with reaching net zero emissions by 2045 within the built environment.

Within the core (500m) Energy Masterplan boundary, there are 73,489 domestic properties and 12,646 non-domestic properties with a total heat demand of 2,044 GWh/a; 1,338 GWh/a are used by non-domestic properties, with the remaining 706 GWh/a being used by domestic buildings. In the Draft Heat in Buildings Strategy, the Scottish Government set-out its target for Scottish homes to meet a minimum energy efficiency standard equivalent to an EPC rating of a C by 2035 where technically feasible and cost-effective. Within the Energy Masterplan boundary, if the residential properties with an EPC rating less than a C improved their EPC rating to a C, this would translate into an estimated 9% reduction in residential heat demand equivalent to 62 GWh/a.

The recently passed Heat Networks (Scotland) Act aims to support Scottish Government's ambition to connect the equivalent of 650,000 homes to heat networks from the current base of 32,000 homes.[3] The Act provides that local authorities may identify suitable areas for the development and operation of heat networks called "Heat Network Zones". The Energy Masterplan identifies a number of heat demand clusters in heat-dense areas in Glasgow City, Renfrewshire, South Lanarkshire, and Inverclyde, which may assist these local authorities to draw up Heat Network Zones.

Cooling and electricity demands were also mapped, however there is limited data available relating to non-domestic cooling demand. Electricity demand mapping highlighted that the highest electricity demand density exists in Renfrewshire and Glasgow City followed by Inverclyde, West Dunbartonshire, Argyll and Bute, and South Lanarkshire.

Sources of low-grade waste heat and existing networks were also mapped. Low-grade waste heat refers to heat that is rejected from industrial or other processes into the atmosphere or waterways. This included the location of wastewater treatment plants, SEPA waste incineration sites, and large combustion sites as well as existing and in-development heat networks. This allows for identification of where heat demand clusters overlap with low-grade waste heat sources which could potentially supply a heat network. Existing heat networks were also mapped, to identify opportunities to extend these where they border heat demand clusters.

Suitable Technologies

There are a variety of technologies that might be used to provide low carbon heat within this area, including heat pumps, waste-heat recovery, renewable electricity generation, electric boilers, biomass and biofuel, hydrogen, energy infrastructure, and energy storage technologies. A qualitative technology assessment using a Multi Criteria Analysis (MCA) was undertaken to establish the overall suitability of these various technologies for deployment within the Energy Masterplan boundary.

The technology assessment highlighted the importance of reducing the energy demands associated with the existing and proposed building stock, but also identified technologies which offer a high level of suitability for adoption within the Energy Masterplan boundary. Suitable technologies identified within the Energy Masterplan boundary included:

  • large-scale water-source heat pumps (WSHP) serving heat-demand clusters via district heating networks with large scale thermal storage. It is estimated that the River Clyde could serve a peak heat load of 51 MW using large WSHPs connected to heat networks. This equates to 11% of the existing residential heat demand or 7,733 new residential 3-bed semi-detached dwellings. It is estimated that the equivalent of 134 Queens Quay heat networks would be required to serve the total heat demand within the Energy Masterplan boundary;
  • electric boilers offering economic demand side flexibility when integrated into district heating networks using cheap electricity. Electric boilers could deliver 46% reduction in carbon emissions compared to a gas boiler based on the current grid carbon intensity;
  • air-source heat pumps can reduce carbon emissions by 79% compared to gas boilers based on the current grid carbon intensity;
  • waste-heat recovery from Energy from Waste (EfW) plants and industrial processes in close proximity to heat demand clusters. It is estimated that the South Clyde EfW energy centre could support the heat and electricity demand of an estimated 9,733 and 55,157 average domestic properties respectively;
  • roof mounted solar photovoltaic (solar PV) as well as opportunities for large-scale solar PV installations coupled with battery storage where they could use vacant and derelict land in areas which are not in close proximity to major settlements.

The study found limited suitable land available for wind developments within the Energy Masterplan boundary, as much of the land area is classed as either Group 1 (areas where wind farms will not be acceptable) or Group 2 (areas of significant protection) under the Wind Turbine Spatial Framework.

Engagement, Request for Information and Feasibility Studies

A stakeholder meeting was held, attended by a wide range of stakeholders from the public, private, and third sectors. After this, stakeholders were requested to provide information on heat and energy network proposals within the relevant area, which resulted in a project longlist of over thirty infrastructure projects. From this list, a multi criteria analysis (MCA) approach, agreed with the Clyde Mission Team, was used to prioritise four projects, with potential to deliver against the five Clyde Missions, which would benefit from development support:

Scottish Event Campus (SEC)

The SEC has ambitions to become a net-zero events campus. As part of this, it has proposed to reduce its current natural gas consumption for heat generation through the development of a water-source heat pump project, which could meet a portion of the SEC's heating and cooling demand. Potentially, this could be part of a wider project which also serves the wider area, including planned developments downriver – and a feasibility study will examine this possibility.

Fortum, Energy-from-Waste (EfW) Heat Network

The Fortum EfW is in close proximity to large potential heat consumers such as Glasgow's Queen Elizabeth University Hospital, which lies to the north of the site. The recovery of heat from the EfW for distribution to nearby heat consumers could improve the efficiency of the EfW plant and offset the consumption of fossil fuels for heat generation on neighbouring residential, commercial, and industrial sites.

Kilcreggan/Rosneath Low Carbon Heating – community scale, off-gas communities

Kilcreggan and Rosneath are looking to adopt suitable low-carbon heating and energy solutions to decarbonise council owned non-domestic properties as well as social housing in these areas which are off-gas grid. The project will focus on potential low-carbon energy solutions at an individual property level.

Former Exxon Site Redevelopment, the former Exxon site

The former Exxon site is a £34m City Deal project. The land is currently undergoing remediation works and will then be transferred to West Dunbartonshire Council to be developed for commercial and industrial purposes. A variety of low-carbon technologies have been proposed for the site, and the project will focus on determining the most suitable.

There are several commercial structure options which the interested parties at these sites might consider for procurement, construction, ownership, and operation of the shortlisted energy systems. Suggested commercial structures for the shortlisted options are explored further in the report. A risk register was also prepared to provide an overview of the risks that should be considered in the delivery of the shortlisted options, including technical, commercial and procurement risk along with risk mitigation measures.

It is envisaged that this Energy Masterplan can be used as an evidence base for consideration of where proposed low carbon and energy infrastructure projects could be implemented to make best use of resources available in the area. Furthermore, it can support the development of future feasibility studies and business cases - and to promote the adoption of, and investment in, low carbon heat and energy infrastructure throughout the Clyde Mission footprint.



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