They say there’s “no smoke without fire” and it’s definitely the case at The Barony Campus as they get set to send out smoke signals on Wednesday 19 August.
As part of the multimillion pound build of the new all inclusive campus for pupils from Cumnock, Auchinleck and surrounding areas, the £350k, 1.4MW biomass boiler will be firing up ready to provide a warm welcome to local pupils of all ages and stages, once the building programme is complete.
Running on wood chip, locally sourced and processed in Ayrshire, the new boiler will consume about 1200 tonnes of the sustainable, eco-friendly material every year.
It will be fed using an auger system from two external woodchip storage silos. And while it will not in itself reduce the energy consumed by the campus, it does drastically reduce carbon emissions in comparison with fossil fuel use.
Combined with the building’s design, using the latest in energy efficient materials and methods, it is predicted to reduce carbon emissions by around 1200 tCO2 per per year compared with the outputs from the predecessor schools.
Wednesday’s start up will certainly signal the boiler’s presence. When the boiler is first lit, it will produce some smoke, a normal initial effect of the commissioning of the system. However, once it is running, the smoke will abate and the whole system will help to contribute to a more environmentally friendly future for the area.