A major local carbon-cutting scheme has been the biggest winner in the latest round of green funding from the Scottish Government.

Scottish Greens co-leader and government minister Patrick Harvie announced that Renfrewshire Council was awarded £2,887,660 from the Scottish Government in addition to match-funding from other organisations.

Renfrewshire Council is developing a state-of-the-art, low carbon heating network and will be the first of its kind in Scotland.

The fifth-generation renewable energy network will convert treated water into low temperature heat, which is then boosted using low carbon technology to provide heating and hot water to facilities at AMIDS including the National Manufacturing Institute Scotland (NMIS) and the Medicines Manufacturing Innovation Centre (MMIC).

It works by directing water normally headed for the White Cart river into a new energy centre being built at a Scottish Water site in Paisley.

There, low temperature heat is extracted then distributed through 3.7kilometres of underground pipes, before being upgraded by low carbon heat pumps into heating and hot water at each of the district businesses.

This includes supplying the NMIS operated by the University of Strathclyde and the Medicines Manufacturing Innovation Centre, CPI, two major research and development facilities opening next year.

The £7.1million project is being funded by Renfrewshire Council and by the Scottish Government’s Low Carbon Infrastructure Transition Programme.

Renfrewshire Council Leader Iain Nicolson said: “AMIDS acts as a magnet for advanced manufacturing companies to locate to Scotland and tap into the incredible innovation and skills expertise at the research centres based here, so it’s fitting that a place of innovation will be served by this innovative low carbon heating system.

“Not only will it provide a cost-effective, green option for the businesses it serves, it will demonstrate the potential of the technology for others to follow suit and supports our pledge in Renfrewshire to be carbon neutral by 2030.”

West of Scotland Green MSP Ross Greer said: “The NMIS is already a key part of Scotland’s transition to a greener Scotland – developing the skills and technologies needed to tackle the climate emergency whilst creating quality jobs in the local area. With this investment, the institute will not only be creating more green jobs in Renfrewshire, it will be a groundbreaking low carbon building in its own right.

“With much of Scotland’s electricity now coming from renewables, our largely gas-fuelled heating network is the next key challenge.

“Last summer’s cooperation agreement between the Greens and SNP means that over the next four years the Scottish Government will invest nearly £2billion into projects such as this, many of which will be focussed on reducing families’ fuel bills through a combination of energy efficiency work and replacing their heating sources with cheaper, greener alternatives.”

To find out more on information on the project, visit: https://www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/article/11961/Innovation-is-heating-up-at-Scotlands-advanced-manufacturing-district-thanks-to-first-of-its-kind-low-carbon-network.