Bowhill House is now heated wholly by renewable energy, thanks to a Ground Source Heat Pump (GSHP), installed in 2021.
Modern solutions: GSHP
Conscious of the energy needed to heat Bowhill House and its impact on the environment, Buccleuch wanted to find the right renewable energy system to do this. In this instance, it was a GSHP, and it is one of the largest in Scotland.
Working in partnership with Borders-based business, Renew Green Energy, installation began in 2020. This involved running a 24km pipe network in South Bowhill field, from the Lower Loch to Bowhill House.
The bespoke heat pump unit was custom built by Danish firm, Fenagy. It is housed within the refurbished fisherman’s hut next to the Loch and has a heat capacity of 600kW.
How it works
Using water (brine), collected from South Bowhill field via the 24km collector loop, the pump creates heat via a refrigeration cycle. This heats water, stored in buffer tanks, from around 35°C to 70°C, before it is pumped through insulated pipes up to Bowhill House. Here, it supplies the hot water and heating all year round.
The installation at Bowhill is a first for the UK; the gas used for the refrigeration cycle is CO2 rather than one of the more common harmful greenhouse gases.
By using electrical power from Buccleuch’s nearby Anaerobic Digester (AD) plant, which converts gas to electricity, this energy solution is wholly renewable.
The AD plant
Built in 2016, the AD plant is an innovative way for Buccleuch’s farms team to recycle cattle and poultry manure. This is fed into the digester, together with waste from the local Border’s Distillery, generating 200kW of electricity around the clock. The electricity supplies not only the GSHP, but also fuels the estate’s farms business and woodchip and grain drying facilities.
Positive environmental impact
The AD plant generates enough electricity to run 400 houses and it is estimated the annual CO2 savings from the GSHP will be 444 tonnes per annum, the equivalent of planting 1,700 trees.