Generating Cleaner Energy as a Community: Nottingham Trent Basin

Ever wondered what it would be like to share your energy with your neighbours?

The residents of the Nottingham Trent Basin housing project know what it’s like.  Making good use of solar panels, ground source heat pumps and Europe’s biggest communal battery, the scheme has the makings of a ‘best practice’ example of sustainable technology being implemented at the neighbourhood level.

Generating Communal Electricity

Residents of the Nottingham Trent Basin housing development all derive the energy to power their homes from the communal battery which shares energy throughout the complex. Any surplus energy is then sold back to the grid and the money is shared among residents.

The scheme cost £100 million to build, with the first inhabitants moving in in 2016. More homes are on the way to add to the development.

Low-Carbon Living

As well as more sustainable ways of living, the Nottingham Trent housing development offers river-side views, outdoor space and contemporary design. IoT (Internet of Things) technologies are used within the homes to make it easier for residents to keep track of their energy usage and expenditure.

All this means greener living without compromising on convenience.

Aims of the Scheme

The Project SCENe scheme (Sustainable Community Energy Networks) is backing this project.

One of the aims of the project is to raise awareness of these green technologies and their potential benefits in the home.

Students from Nottingham University are currently working on software to share information and data about the project with homeowners and the wider public. This information will be displayed online and in the community hub at the Trent Basin.

Why is This Sustainable Technology Important?

Since 1990, the UK has cut greenhouse emissions by 42%. However, there is still a long way to go to combat growing energy consumption. The energy used to heat homes makes up almost a third of greenhouse emissions in the UK. Residential schemes therefore clearly have a key role to play in finding greener solutions, and government backing is an important means of driving growth in the clean energy sector.

The Future of Nottingham Trent Basin

This project has already won the title of ‘Sustainable Development of the Year’ from the East Midlands Bricks Awards.

The orchestrators of the scheme are optimistic that housing developments such as this one could be commonplace throughout the UK in the future.

Funding for Clean Tech Projects

Innovate UK, who are part of UK Research and Innovation are supporting the Nottingham Trent project. This is part of a government scheme to accelerate clean growth in the UK and find innovative, sustainable solutions to current challenges.

Subscribe to the Innovate UK YouTube channel to find out about the other related projects they’ve helped fund, support and connect to build greener growth.

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