27 September 2023
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Lowering emissions as water services flow to net zero future27 September 2023
We have introduced new sensors at a waste water treatment site near Glasgow, in a UK technology first, which allows even greater insight into process emissions.
This enables staff to adjust site operations to reduce harmful process emissions.
“We have cut emissions associated with producing the daily water and waste water needs of Scotland by almost a quarter of a million tonnes of carbon since we started reporting and are demonstrating leadership in this area. There is much more to be done.”Professor Simon Parsons
Director of Strategic Customer and Service Planning
As Scottish Water dials up a transformation which harnesses technology and innovation, a new report published in Climate Week, has highlighted the progress towards net zero water and services.
Delivering more than 1.5 billion of water every day and removing more than 1 billion of resulted in 217,000 of carbon emitted during 2022/23.
Scottish Water started recording greenhouse gas reductions associated with its activities in 2006/07 when 462,000 of carbon were emitted every year. We have reduced that by almost a quarter of a million of carbon annually.
During the past 12 months, there was an in-year reduction of 14,000 .
And in the past 3 years since the published a to achieve net zero status by 2040 there was a 37,000 reduction.
Transformation projects across both water and assets and infrastructure have driven the reductions – at the same time as enhancing customer experience and service.
Professor Simon Parsons, Director of Strategic Customer and Service Planning, said: “It is vital we do all we can to protect the environment and deliver services which exceed our customers’ expectations, now and in the future. It is not either/or - we must transform how we operate and at the same time deliver performance to maintain public trust and confidence.
“Transformation projects are key to unlocking the full potential of ways in which we can reduce emissions, provide value for customers, and protect services for the future in a climate change world.
“We have cut emissions associated with producing the daily water and needs of Scotland by almost a quarter of a million of carbon since we started reporting and are demonstrating leadership in this area. There is much more to be done.”
The annual update highlighted:
A reduction of 14,000 of operational carbon during 2022/23 – 6% annual year on year reduction
A total emissions output of 217,000 of operational carbon – compared to 462,000 in 2006/07
Saved 6.8 GWh of electricity in water and services through energy efficiency
Installed our biggest solar energy resource at Scotland’s largest water processing site
Piloted low carbon materials in construction and pioneered with supply chain partners on low emission construction site set up
Expanded the number of electric vehicles in our fleet and installed 171 charging points across our assets to enable their use
A growing pipeline of projects in Scottish Water Horizons to support the growing hydrogen economy.
Transformation projects designed to enhance operational process are also delivering net zero gains:
A scheme rolled out at one of Scotland’s biggest treatment sites has been expanded to 16 other major locations with further carbon savings forecast. The Exemplar Treatment Works operatives real-time management of sites, providing new dynamic insights into how they are working using smart sensors. This allows for adjustments to be made which make them more effective, including in how they consume energy and reducing journeys to site.
The introduction of new sensors at a waste water treatment site near Glasgow in a UK technology first has allowed even greater insight into process emissions which enables staff to adjust site operations to reduce harmful process emissions
operations at central Scotland’s largest water distribution network using technology to run service reservoirs and reduce energy use by 10%
A new field deployment system is also helping reduce avoidable journeys at the same time as offering customers a more effective way of getting their repairs assessed and completed. Around 1700 fewer journeys were required in this work.
Gordon Reid, Scottish Water’s Net Zero General Manager, said the update published today (Sept 27) pointed to real progress with more to be achieved to reach net zero.
He said: “It is pleasing that during Scotland’s Climate Week we can demonstrate real progress towards a Net Zero service. The key to success is understanding what works and scaling that up at speed. There will be challenges ahead but by being bold and innovative we can remain on track to deliver for our customers and for the environment.”
You can read the update in full here.
Professor Simon Parsons is Scottish Water's Director of Strategic Customer and Service Planning.
He says transformation projects are key to unlocking the full potential of ways in which we can reduce emissions, provide value for customers, and protect services for the future.