Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of MRW, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Birmingham plans district heating network and vehicle charging

Birmingham plans to create the world’s first city-wide district heating network that will power buildings and electric cars with energy from waste

Multiple combined heat and power systems already in place across the city will be joined into the Birmingham District Heating Network, powered by biofuel from food waste and sewage sludge processed through a gasification plant operated by the European Bioenergy Research Institute (Ebri).

The network will be enhanced by technology enabling surplus power to be stored in the batteries of electric vehicles.

The project is funded with £1.1m from Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency, and will be carried out by Ebri and Aston Business School, developer Cofely District Energy, delivery agency Cenex Ltd and energy efficiency company Open Energi.

It is part of the Department for Energy and Climate Change’s push to boost renewable heat production and usage and will run from January 2015 until June 2017.

As part of the project, an electric vehicle charging infrastructure system will be installed in Birmingham’s city centre with Ebri claiming an electric vehicle such as a Nissan Leaf would be charged to 80% within 30 minutes instead of six to eight hours with a standard domestic connection.

Chris Walsh, ‎head of technical support and consultancy at Cenex, said: “The integration of electric vehicles enabled with bi-directional energy transfer and bio-based generation technologies will offer a new way to generate and dispatch low carbon energy for future electricity networks.”

Ebri said the system could be replicated at more than 900 electrical vehicle charging points throughout the UK.

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.