University adopts new biomass energy plan

The University was forced to introduce a new energy plan this week after a council planning committee attacked the University’s lack of progress on environmental issues in October.

The University plans to use Biomass to cover at least 10% of the energy needs of the new Heslington East development. This is the first part of the University’s plan to develop enough renewable energy, through the use of biomass boilers, to power both Heslington East and the current Heslington West campus.

The plan involves locating a biomass boiler at Heslington East to generate hot water, using woodchip from local sources, to supplement water heated in the Universities central boiler system.

The University is also developing a £3 million utilities corridor between the extension at Heslington East and the current campus site, Heslington West.

Elizabeth Heaps, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Estates and Strategic Projects, said of the project: “Renewable energy is an important part of our strategy but efficient use of energy in the University as a whole is critically important. All buildings on Heslington East will meet rigorous design standards, delivering high energy efficiency and low energy use.”


  1. While I think it is great that universities are implementing renewable energy technologies on campus to save power, they also need to look at the environmental impact.

    Surely the burning of these wood chips will create a lot of air pollution? Would it not be better to heat the boilers with more environmentally friendly biofuels, such as clean-burning ethanol?


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