Carbon projects turns up heat on emissions

THE second phase of the Scottish Federation of Housing Association’s (SFHA) ground-breaking Carbon Portal project is set to turn up the heat on efforts to tackle emissions from thousands of homes in Scotland, with infra-red technology being used to ‘photograph’ thousands of homes nationwide.

After a hugely successful pilot, the project is being rolled out across Scotland, with 30,000 housing association and co-operative homes including Ayrshire Housing, being scanned over the winter, using groundbreaking thermal imaging software to pinpoint where precious heat is being lost.

The images pinpoint exactly where heat is escaping and recommend where insulation can best be placed, and what type should be used, to preserve heat and cut energy bills.

The homes will all be scanned by February 2012.

With the issues of fuel poverty and climate change becoming ever more important for tenants and landlords, more than 60 social landlords from Shetland to Stranraer have expressed interest in the project.

The successful pilot, led by SFHA and funded by the Scottish Government, took place in 2010 and included Dunedin Canmore, Cairn and Clyde Valley housing associations and Riverclyde Homes. Around 10,000 homes were scanned using the innovative thermal imaging software, with the results analysed and published online.

A second phase is now being rolled out by SFHA, funded largely by SIG Energy Management. The housing associations will pay £5 per home towards the thermal imaging, which will be carried out by IRT Surveys Ltd.

Once the properties have been insulated, a second thermal image will be taken between November 2012 and February 2013. The results will then be published online on the Carbon Portal.

Mary Taylor, CEO of the SFHA said: “I’m delighted that SFHA is again spearheading innovation in energy efficiency. The Carbon Portal project is a cost-effective way of assessing what work needs to be done on Scotland’s existing homes, to prevent valuable heat being lost.”

Stewart Little, CEO of IRT Surveys Ltd, said: “IRT are very excited to be involved in such a unique and prestigious project which allows us to showcase our latest software and infra-red technology.”