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Pembrokeshire South East Energy Group

National Trust in Wales: Energy Neutral by 2015

29th March 2013

Plas Newydd Country House, Anglesey

Plas Newydd Country House, Anglesey

National Trust in Wales – Energy Neutral by 2015

          Paul Southall, Environment Advisor for the National Trust gave an extremely inspiration talk to members and friends of Pembrokeshire South East Energy Group at their March meeting.

          He started by pointing out that the Trust held a wide range of properties, large and small, including villages, pubs, farms, 2 gold mines and 700 miles of the coastline. A lot of the work that they had done could be followed in a domestic, business or corporate setting.

          The starting point was monitoring. This included all the cost 'inputs' such as oil, gas, coal, water, sewerage. By careful monitoring excess heating, timers wrongly set, water being paid for that was not used by the Trust became apparent. Sensible systems were then used to make the necessary adjustments which involved all staff and volunteers being aware of any wastage of resources.

          Next came the energy efficiency steps – lagging pipes, insulating roof spaces and where possible walls, making sure windows fitted (excluding draughts) using shutters and heavy lined curtains. The immense number of light bulbs on Trust properties made it necessary to find a way of replacing the incandescent type with energy efficient ones. For a number of reasons none already on the market were suitable. In conjunction with a Welsh firm (which now employs 3 people) a new type of bulb was created which fulfilled all the necessary criteria. Water harvesting reduces water bills.

          The Trust also looked at generating electricity. It was already doing so at some of its sites – the water mill at Aberdulais Falls for example. Power from steams and rivers in Snowdonia is being harnessed. Photo voltaic panels generate electricity from the sunlight when the properties are busiest – in the summer months. These have been installed at many properties and always in keeping with the setting – Llanerchaeron is a great example as they are installed away from the house on both an agricultural building and in a field and contribute 30% of the energy needs for the mansion. All PV panels must be recycleable at the end of their life. Solar panels heat water. Biomass heats properties both large and small – as an example Chirk Castle uses wood pellets and a new system is coming on stream at Stackpole. A new development is the use of a marine heat pump due to be installed in the Menai Straits to give heat to Plas Newydd. Wind turbines installed at farms help to make them financially viable.

          The aim is to install the right thing at the right place.

          All projects have to meet certain criteria. The payback time for energy efficient measure must be within 5 years and renewable energy projects must be within 10 years.

          The savings already made are considerable. Currently since 2009 there has been a 49% reduction in energy use. The aim is to be energy neutral by 2015.

          As Paul said “ If we can, you can”.


Past Articles
1st March 2013Climate Change and a Sustainable Future: A talk by Peter Davies, Sustainable Futures Commissioner for Wales
25th January 2013Waste Not Want Not: A talk by Hywel Gibbs, Pembrokeshire County Council Waste Awareness Officer
30th November 2012Array of Hope: A talk by Paul Carter & Kim Daye from RWE Renewables on The Atlantic Array
26th October 2012The Green Deal: A talk by William Silverstone of Silverstone Green Energy
28th September 2012A Fair Wind?: A talk by Steve Hack of Seren Energy on PSEEG's renewable energy project
14th September 2012Not a Waste of Time: a visit to Withyhedges Landfill and recycling centre
29th June 2012The Need for a More Sustainable Future: A talk by Geraldine Leach of Transition Narberth
1st June 2012Know your Flood Risk: A talk by Andy Irving, Flood Risk Management Team Leader
11th May 2012The Power of the Sun: A visit to the Solar Farm at Rhosygilwen
23rd March 2012Planting Green Thoughts: A talk by Jo Horsley, Environment Wales Development Officer
24th February 2012The Atlantic Array offshore wind farm: A talk by Robert Thornhill, Development Manager
2nd December 2011Pathfinder Progress: A talk by Peter Willis from the Welsh Government's Pathfinder Programme
4th November 2011The DeltaStream project: A talk by Chris Williams, Development Director of Tidal Energy Ltd.
30th September 2011How Green is my Valley?: A talk by Grenville Ham, Manager of The Green Valleys Project
23rd September 2011PSEEG's visit to Carew Mill with Marten Lewis of the Darwin Centre
5th August 2011The Manner of the Message: A talk by Neil Sefton on communication skills
24th June 2011The Work of the Darwin Centre: A talk by Marten Lewis, manager of the Darwin Centre
27th May 2011Electric Cars – The Road Ahead?: The talk by John Lilly of Dragon Electric Vehicles
13th May 2011Are electric cars the way forward?: A talk by John Lilly of Dragon Electric Vehicles
22nd April 2011Sustainability in Action: A visit to the Science & Technology Park (Technium) in Pembroke Dock
1st April 2011A Revolution in Wind Energy?: A talk by Vaughan Griffiths from Quietrevolution, Pembroke Dock
25th February 2011Preparing for Floods: A talk by Richard Wickes of the Environment Agency
14th January 2011The Way Forward for Wind?: A talk by Steve Hack of Seren Energy
12th November 2010How Green is your Castle?: The National Trust & Global Warming
15th October 2010Challenge of the Rising Sea: The effects on the Pembrokeshire coastline
10th August 2010The beautiful Welsh coastline: Response to possible rising sea levels
18th June 2010Visit to Costain at Canaston Bridge: Not Costing the Earth
16th April 2010Feed in Tariffs: Power to the People
12th March 2010Heat Pumps & Photo Voltaic Panels: Prepare for the Goodlife
12th February 2010Parliamentary Candiates at Green Question Time in Saundersfoot
15th January 2010Weather & Climate: A Question of Energy
4th December 2009Sustainable Community Ventures: Regeneration in Pembrokeshire
13th November 2009Community Initiatives: Sustainable Wales leads by example
16th October 2009Climate Change Challenge for Candidates & Micro-generation with wind turbines
2nd October 2009A Visit to Castle Pill Wind Farm: Quiet blows the wind
11th September 2009Renewable Sustainable Energy: An Energy Survey for South East Pembrokeshire
10th July 2009A talk by Lorraine Dallmeier of Infinergy: Wind Power - Pembrokeshire's Potential
12th June 2009St. Oswald's, Jeffreyston - Pembrokeshire's Beacon of Sustainability
24th April 2009Solar Panels: Three Cheers for Sunny Pembrokeshire
13th March 2009Ashton Hayes Community Energy Reduction & Hot Water From the Sun
13th February 2009Could Pembrokeshire go carbon neutral?
14th November 2008Environment Wales to provide 'Start-Up' Funding for PSEEG
17th October 2008PSEEG to become a Registered Charity

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