Minister commends University’s “visionary” green energy centre
Scottish energy minister Fergus Ewing visited the University’s £25 million green energy centre under construction at Guardbridge today (Wednesday 13 April 2016).
The state-of-the-art biomass facility, using wood from sustainable local sources, is being built on the site of the former paper mill at Guardbridge and will pump hot water from the plant four miles underground to heat laboratories and student residences in St Andrews.
The green energy centre will help to regenerate north east Fife by creating more than 225 jobs in the construction phase. The University has developed the Guardbridge Guarantee as part of the project. This ensures that the project supports apprenticeship and graduate training, creating and sustaining jobs while working with the local community to promote environment and energy projects and local business.
During his visit Mr Ewing met senior University staff, project partners and contractors.
Mr Ewing said: “St Andrews is leading the way with a visionary plan. This is a terrifically exciting project and a major investment.
“St Andrews is to be commended for their sustainable energy research centre which will be a significant asset for Scotland as well as for the University.”
The University’s Acting Chief Executive and Quaestor Derek Watson said: “After years of planning and preparation the biomass plant is starting to take shape and will be operational by the end of the year. This represents a major strategic step for the University and underlines our commitment to becoming carbon neutral for energy.
“With the biomass at its heart, the former paper mill site is on the verge of a new lease of life which lends itself to the creation of a range of renewable energies and technologies which will keep the University among Europe’s leading research institutions.
“The Guardbridge project will breathe new life into local communities and re-establish the site as a key economic centre in Scotland, and has the capacity to generate hundreds of new jobs.”
Pictured (from left to right): Scottish Energy Minister Fergus Ewing, Acting Chief Executive and Quaestor of the University of St Andrews Derek Watson and Vital Energi Project Manager David Raley
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