Graduate celebrates delivery
of first solar project

29 August 2023

Heriot-Watt University Graduate, Steven Brasher, celebrates delivery of his first solar project at Denny Waste Water Treatment Works.

More than £660,000 was invested by Scottish Water to install over 830 solar panels at the works as part of the company’s efforts to cut operational carbon emissions to net zero by 2030.

The solar photovoltaic (PV) panels installed at Denny are capable of supplying over a third of the site’s annual energy requirements.

The carbon-reducing technology, which works by converting light into electricity using semi-conducting materials, will reduce carbon emissions by 88 tonnes a year – that’s the same as 56 return passenger flights from Edinburgh to New York.

Specialist Graduate, Steven Brasher

Inspiring work to lower emissions

Brasher, a chemical and energy engineering graduate with Scottish Water Horizons, the public utility’s commercial subsidiary, said;

“I am really excited and proud to see the completion of our latest array of solar panels.

“I joined Scottish Water Horizons less than a year ago and I have been incredibly inspired by all the work that goes on behind the scenes to lower our carbon footprint.  To be given the opportunity to lead a project that will help greatly reduce the emissions from one of Scottish Water’s operational sites has been really rewarding.

“As a business, we’re looking at a myriad of ways to maximise solar output and I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to get involved and widen my experience. Already I have learned a huge amount and I cannot wait to apply those learnings to future renewable projects.”

Ariel view of the solar PV scheme at Denny treatment works (image courtesy of FES Group)

Alan Mearns, Project Manager at Scottish Water Horizons, said;

“It has been brilliant to see Steven manage this project from start to finish.  At Scottish Water Horizons we are firm believers that the best way to learn is by doing and I think the successful delivery of this project proves just that.

“Having been on the other side of the fence managing Scottish Water treatment sites and seen first hand the positive impact of renewables technologies on our assets, I’ve been on my own steep learning curve so I can appreciate all Steven’s hard work.  I’ve really enjoyed developing Steven’s potential and have no doubt he will go a long way.

A bold approach to tackle climate change

“We need to be bold in our approach to help tackle climate change and it’s vital that we nurture and develop new talent to meet increasing demand.

“This new solar array will produce renewable energy for decades to come and demonstrates the lasting legacy that bringing young talent into the industry can have.

Scottish Water has committed to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2040, with an interim target to host or self-generate three times its annual electricity consumption by 2030.

The installation at Denny Waste Water Treatment Works joins a long list of solar PV schemes already up and running at many Scottish Water assets across Scotland. Currently, almost 80 of Scottish Water’s water and waste water treatment works are now either self-sufficient or partly sufficient in their power requirements.

The project was delivered by renewable energy solutions specialists FES Group on behalf of Scottish Water Horizons.

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