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Investment helps to reduce carbon footprint of UEA campus

The University of East Anglia (UEA) is reducing its carbon footprint by producing its own energy to power and heat campus facilities, after investing £4.5 million into low carbon-emission engines. 

Tuesday 23 January became the first week day when the University produced enough of its own energy for the entire campus, without needing to use electricity from the National Grid. The engines even generated enough electricity to export a small amount to the National Grid. 

Operational since October 2017, UEA’s new Combined Heat and Power (CHP) engines have consistently powered campus facilities in Norwich during the weekend, when many of the buildings are not in use.

The engines use natural gas to generate electricity and, unlike a standard power station, the heat from the process is captured and used for UEA’s buildings.

The CHP engines are around 20-30% more efficient than gas power stations and generating electricity on site prevents energy being lost through transportation from a power station to campus.

The investment in this technology is expected to be recuperated after five years by the large savings made in energy costs.

Phillip Hunt, Head of Sustainability at UEA, said: “Our campus has 85 buildings with 275,000 square meters of floor area.

“It’s important that we introduce this sort of technology to make our campus more efficient, sustainable and affordable for years to come.”

For more information about UEA’s sustainability plan/strategy, visit: www.uea.ac.uk/about/sustainability/strategy-and-policy