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New guidance for decarbonising the public sector estate unveiled

New Public Sector Decarbonisation Guidance for cutting carbon emissions across public sector estates has been published by Energy Systems Catapult.

Aimed at public sector organisations and the wider supply chain, the guidance supports a repeatable, systematic approach to decarbonisation that is scalable from individual buildings to large campus sites and whole organisation estate portfolios.

It was developed during the Modern Energy Partners (MEP) innovation programme, which was tasked with exploring how to decarbonise the public sector estate.

Through the MEP programme, a wide range of insights, tools and templates were developed to guide public sector organisations through the decarbonisation process.

Together with the evidence gathered, Energy Systems Catapult, supported by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), has now made these available to public sector organisations and the wider supply chain.

This will allow them to benefit from the knowledge and experience gained from MEP.

Topics covered include:

  1. Strategy – management, planning and governance.
  2. Data – the importance of smart energy data management, including metering/sub-metering, data monitoring and analytics.
  3. People – skills, capabilities and capacities, supply chains and procurement.
  4. Costs – financial planning, business cases and funding.
  5. Information gathering – site visits/maps, baselining/benchmarking and data capture.
  6. Concept design – technological options, calculators for different interventions and engineering assessments.
  7. Energy and cost modelling – developing, modelling and writing up solutions, linked to business case development.

The guidance was developed with learnings from the in-depth MEP programme that worked with industry partners to develop systematic, repeatable and scalable methods of decarbonising large campus-style sites, while ensuring efficiency and value for money.

MEP worked on a test bed of 42 sites across the public sector responsible for over 294,000 tCO2e carbon emissions, equating to 8% of Ministry of Defence (MOD), 17% of Ministry of Justice (MOJ) and 6% of NHS emissions.

MEP Phase 2, which ran from April 19 to September 21, was funded by BEIS and overseen by the Department, alongside the Cabinet Office and other estate-owning departments, the MOD, MOJ and NHS respectively.

Energy Systems Catapult provided programme delivery, analytical and technical support, working with Aecom, Atkins, Buro Happold, Ricardo and Stantec amongst others, to draw in cross-industry capabilities and knowledge.

The programme focused on learning through doing, testing out the practicalities of decarbonisation on complex campus-style public sector sites.

MEP focused on demonstrating how public sector campus-style sites could work towards commitments by the UK Government to cut direct carbon emissions across the public sector estate by at least 50% by 2032 against a 2017 baseline.

Commenting, Business Lead for Modern Energy Partners at Energy Systems Catapult, Christine St John-Cox said:

“We developed this Public Sector Decarbonisation Guidance to help government organisations at all levels take a systematic, repeatable and scalable approach to cutting carbon emissions.

“Organisations undertaking this work must take a strategic approach, capture the right data, have skilled people in place, develop a detailed concept design and put a strong business case together to capture the funding for delivery.

“So, this guidance includes a range of insights, tools and templates, allowing a range of bodies to benefit from the knowledge and experience gained from MEP.

 “The Modern Energy Partners programme demonstrated that it was possible to put complex sites on track to hit decarbonisation targets through a sustained effort.”

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