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Hartlepool Mail - Cost Saving Council Looks to the sun

Thursday 16th June

Hartlepool Borough Council is turning to solar power to save money and help the environment - and is urging residents to follow their lead. 

The council is installing 42 seperate photvoltaic panels on the sounth-facing roof of one of its main buildings, Bryan Hanson House, off Lynn street.

The scheme is being funded with the Regional Imporvement and Efficiency Partnership (RIEP) and will cover a proportion of the buildings day to day power needs.

Under the terms of a Governement initiative, the council will also be paid by its energy supplier for every kilowatt hour of electricity generated by the panels and there will be opportunities to sell surplus back to the National Grid.

Paul Hurwood, Hartlepool Borough Council's climate change officer, said it will earn the council "vital income" and has urged people in the town to consider the merits of installing photovoltaic panels on their own properties as they can also benefit, and contact him for more information.

He said: "We will receive 36.1p for every kilowatt of electricity generated for the next 25 years.

"Given that the photovoltaic panels have the potential to generate 8,000 kw hours per year - enough to power a laptop continuously for 14 years - we stand to receive nearly £3,000 a year as well as receiving free zero-carbon energy that will be used on-site.

"We will also get a smaller additional amount for any suplus energy that we sell on.

"The use of the paenls will also help reduce the council's carbon footprint.

"They will reduce CO2 emisiions by around four tonnes - enough to fill a swimming pool at the Mill House Leisure Centre four times over."

Hartlepool Mayor Stuart Drummond said plans are already under way to see if other council buildings will be suitable for the panels.

He said: "The council is always looking for new and innovative ways of improving efficiency and generating income and this initiative has tremendous potential.

"As well as installing panels at Bryan Hanson House, we will also be looking at the possibility of putting them on some of our other buildings.

"We have a long standing commitment to the environment and the photovoltaic panels are complementing work already carried out by our well established internal carbon management group, Carbon Action Now."

The Solar PV installation was carried out by John N Dunn Group/SOL2O

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