All new public buildings in Edinburgh should meet targets on renewable energy, in plans unveiled by Edinburgh Green Party today (Monday).

The party has taken advice from Green councillors in Kirklees in West Yorkshire where, as part of the governing coalition, the Greens set new standards for renewables.  By 2011, 30% of all energy needs in new public buildings have to be met from renewable energy such as solar panels, wind turbines and wood pellets. 

Greens in Edinburgh believe the city can set similar but even more challenging targets.

Edinburgh Greens Co-convenor, Gavin Corbett, said: “Green councillors will be committed to practical action as part of a long term programme to put Edinburgh in the vanguard of the battle against climate change.  By investing in renewable energy and more efficient ways of using it, we can win in three ways.  We can reduce energy demand; we can become less reliant on imported energy; and we can do all of that with huge savings for the public purse.

“Our colleagues in councils across the UK have shown what can happen if Greens are elected.  But we believe that, in Edinburgh, we can take these targets and surpass them.�

Green activists also say they were inspired by a recent tour of Edinburgh University’s ground-breaking energy plant, which provides large parts of the campus with electricity but also uses “wasted� energy to heat the buildings.  Using this technique, the university is on track to reduce carbon emissions by 40% and to save £1 million a year on energy bills.

CONTACT: Gavin Corbett, 07847 504011