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Case Studies > Muirhouse Farm Renewable Energy Projects

Stow, South East Scotland


Case Study Muirhouse Farm Renewable Energy Projects Stow, South East Scotland www.helpingithappen.co.uk
Case Study Muirhouse Farm Renewable Energy Projects Muirhouse Farm, a member of Scottish Land & Estates, is a 600 acre hill farm in the Scottish Borders near Edinburgh. The farm has decided to try to become completely off grid in terms of its power and heat supplies.

The first renewable energy system, a ground source heat pump, was installed by owners Iver and Wendy Salvesen in 2007 before any grants or the Feed in Tariff scheme were proposed. Since then, in 2009 they installed a 4 kw solar array, in 2011 a 2.5kw wind turbine followed in 2012 by two further 5kw wind turbines, and in 2012 they then installed a 2 kw solar array for office power. Going further they then removed their Oil Aga replacing it with an electric Aga, powered from the wind turbine. This provided cooking facilities and heat without using fossil fuels. Most recently in late 2014 they installed two biomass plants; a 199kw Guntomatic and a 65 kw HT Heiztechnik. These supply heat to the houses, office, the function room which is let to holiday makers and also to a local sports group for events, and also the three holiday units on the farm.

The combined renewables installations are large enough to supply heat, but not power, to the planned additional holiday units. So the future plan is to add a further 2 x 100kw wind turbines and a 30kw solar array.

At the moment the family and business are almost completely energy independent for the whole farm, and by the time the 30kw solar array is in, they will be net energy exporters. Looking further ahead to after the proposed installation of the farm scale 100kw wind turbines, the farm will be able to supply power to most of the local village.

Continuing the green theme, with the new railway to the village coming soon, both the farm and the community can start to further reduce fossil fuel use by using the railway for environment friendly transport. 

This is a great example of a developing land-based business measuring power demand, mitigating existing power use and then providing extra energy for the community. Examples like this may help to make the local area energy-independent and prevent rural power shortages in the future.
Scottish Land & Estates
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