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Energy Saving

Academy Health Club, Harrogate


A green energy makeover will reduce the carbon footprint of Harrogate’s Academy Health Club by 306 tonnes per year, equivalent to the environmental benefit of removing more than 100 cars from the roads.

The luxury health and fitness club has partnered with energy management specialist ENER-G to replace its ageing energy infrastructure, which was becoming increasingly unreliable. Old boilers, pumps and lighting are being replaced with highly efficient new systems that will reduce energy bills as well as carbon emissions.

An initial site energy audit undertaken by ENER-G to explore possible energy efficiency measures also showed that The Academy could cut its water bill. This will further improve its green performance by introducing special tap and shower controls to reduce consumption.

The Academy has shown that going green makes good financial sense, since the carbon saving energy efficiency improvements will pay for themselves in lower bills. As such, ENER-G has funded all the capital costs of the new building services infrastructure via a ten-year energy services agreement that guarantees minimum energy savings. The club will repay the investment as it saves over the ten year period.

The Academy approached ENER-G to conduct a combined heat and power (CHP) feasibility study of the site to look at how a CHP system could help save energy. After carrying out an on-site survey, ENER-G advised that CHP wasn’t the optimum solution for the site at this time, but could be considered in the future.

The energy infrastructure was in need of significant update, with varying availability and reliability issues from the on-site boilers. Additionally the indoor tennis court lighting was becoming increasingly intermittent and difficult to replace.

ENER-G is replacing the existing heating system with five new 200kW boilers. The next stage is the upgrade and replacement of the current lighting scheme that is serving the main building and indoor tennis court area. This is to be replaced with a new high efficiency lighting solution, consisting of a mixture of 1,052 LED and high efficiency fluorescent fittings.

The energy efficiency measures will reduce the site’s electrical demand by 288,382 kWe per year, providing a stable base-load both electrically and thermally, thus ensuring that any future CHP installation would be optimally sized and future proofed.

Philippa Shackleton, Managing Director at The Academy said: “Working with ENER-G has allowed us to implement many energy efficient changes in one go, enabling us to run a more efficient health club. If we were to have done this by ourselves the huge capital costs would have meant we could only do it little-by-little, which would have been disruptive and delayed the energy saving benefits. ENER-G’s knowledge and experience, and ability to fund the entire project upfront, via a 10 year services agreement, has helped us make positive changes that will benefit both the environment and our members.”

Alan Barlow Managing Director of ENER-G Combined Power Limited said: “Although we are best known as a combined heat and power (CHP) specialist, the first step in any energy efficiency programme, particularly when considering cogeneration, should be to reduce energy demand. Our audit showed that there was significant scope to improve energy efficiency by replacing the existing infrastructure and that in this instance CHP was not the best solution for the site. Even where we are specifying CHP systems, we always seek to take a holistic approach and address demand side measures first to ensure that the system is correctly sized to meet an organisation’s future energy needs. Our role is to identify and implement the measures that will offer best return on investment.”