The University of Aberdeen is working with Robert Gordon University and the Crown Estate to develop a renewable energy project to produce enough energy to offset the electricity use of the two universities - delivering long-term economic and environmental benefits and a significant carbon saving contribution.
First steps are now being taken by SgurrEnergy Limited to assess the development potential of The Crown Estate’s rural land and to look into which type of renewable energy technology will be most suited to the estates.
An initial feasibility study has identified preferred sites at Fochabers, Applegirth and Whitehill estates as having the land characteristics suitable for renewable energy development and will be investigated further.
It is anticipated that when developed, the project will make a significant contribution to offsetting the annual grid electricity usage of both universities and to The Crown Estate’s own total contributions and carbon savings.
Angus Donaldson, Director of Estates at the University of Aberdeen, said: “We are delighted to be working with our partners in this exciting collaboration. The University of Aberdeen is committed to continual improvement of our environmental performance and to promoting the sustainable use of resources. And with utilities costs having risen sharply in recent years, this project offers the realistic prospect of adding a significant renewable energy stream to our current energy mix.”
Mike McCall, Robert Gordon University’s Director of Finance said: “The project is an opportunity to work in collaboration, towards shared objectives, with two like-minded organisations. We hope that there will also be scope to engage academic staff and students in research and experiential learning linked to the project, as well working with local communities for mutual benefit.”
Alan Laidlaw, The Crown Estate’s Rural Portfolio Manager said:“We are delighted to be working with two leading Scottish universities to explore the potential for a renewable energy project on our rural estates. Combining a commercial, active and long-term approach to asset management is key to ensuring sustainable development. This joint project could provide significant economic and environmental benefits for years to come and also help contribute to Scotland’s ambitious renewable energy targets.”