South Tyneside Council switches to 100% renewable energy supply as part of green revolution

Public buildings will soon be running fully on renewable energy after council chiefs switched as part of South Tyneside’s green revolution.

South Tyneside Council is aiming to be carbon neutral by 2030
South Tyneside Council is aiming to be carbon neutral by 2030

South Tyneside Council’s electricity will be generated in the UK from completely renewable sources, including wind, solar and hydro.

Chiefs say the sources will all have zero-emissions ratings, backed by REGOs (Renewable Energy Guarantees of Origin).

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The council has set itself an ambitious target to reduce carbon emissions by more than 17,000 tonnes by 2030. The authority says the switch to 100% enewable electricity will cut that by 14%

Cllr Tracey Dixon, leader of South Tyneside Council, said the contract with provider EDF allows the council to review and select the sources of its electricity supply.

“This switch further underlines our commitment to our goal of carbon neutrality by 2030,” she said.

“Our climate change strategy and aspirations are ambitious, and we are embedding and promoting sustainability in everything we do.

“This is the latest in a raft of green initiatives being developed by the council, including continued investment in cutting-edge green technology to meet our energy supply demands.

“We are bringing forward genuinely pioneering schemes like the Viking Energy Network at Jarrow and our minewater energy project at Hebburn, as well as a district heating system being developed at South Shields Riverside.

“One of my priorities as leader of the council is to invest in our environment, to lead the charge against climate change and to influence our communities to do the same so that together we can tackle the challenge ahead of us for the benefit of our borough and future generations.”

The council declared a climate emergency in July 2019 and since then has developed a comprehensive five-year strategy and action plan, Sustainable South Tyneside.

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There has already been considerable progress in bringing forward highly innovative schemes such as the UK-first Viking Energy Network in Jarrow, which aims to slash annual carbon emissions by 1,035 tonnes by harnessing heat from the River Tyne to heat council-owned buildings.

The funding is being used to undertake a range of energy improvement and decarbonisation measures across various Council buildings including schools, leisure facilities and civic buildings.

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