The joint venture from Vattenfall Heat UK and Midlothian Council has employed FES Group to deliver low-carbon heating to Shawfair Town.
The firms say that this project will deliver low carbon heating to around 3,000 homes, education and retail properties in the region,
The joint venture known as Midlothian Energy claims this could reduce emissions by up to 90% in comparison to individual gas boilers fitted in every home.
James Reid, FES Energy Operations Director at FES Group said: “FES are delighted to be Principal Contractor supporting Vattenfall and Midlothian Council in their ambitious energy strategy for the Midlothian area and look forward to further milestones being achieved at the development over the coming year.”
Midlothian Energy captures heat from Millerhill Recycling and Energy Recovery Centre and is then transported through a network of underground pipes to provide a low-carbon source of heating and hot water for properties at Shawfair.
The pipes for the initial phase of the network will be around four kilometres in length and the project is expected to save over 2,500 tonnes of CO2 per year, the equivalent of taking 1,200 cars off the road.
The project will be granted up to £7.3m from the Scottish Government’s Low Carbon Infrastructure Transformation Project.
Eoghan Maguire, director for Scotland at Vattenfall Heat UK said: “Scotland’s ambitious net zero target of 2045 cannot be met unless district heating is deployed at scale.
“The collaboration between organisations working to deliver this project means that the vision for this brand-new town can become exemplary for district heating in Scotland and beyond.
“This project is such an important first step in our vision for the region. Vattenfall has developed a strategy to deliver city-wide district heating that is capable of supplying heat to the equivalent of 170,000 homes in Midlothian, Edinburgh and East Lothian by 2050, matching the scale of our heat networks in Europe.”
Midlothian Energy says that the Shawfair development is a key feature in its five-year business plan to supply low-carbon heat to over 30,000 households and progress a variety of other energy projects.
Midlothian Council’s cabinet member for environment, Councillor Dianne Alexander, added: “The Council is delighted to see the first of many projects for Midlothian Energy reach the construction phase. Our innovative approach to working with a highly experienced partner will help Midlothian deliver on its ambitious net zero plans and contribute to reducing fuel poverty.”