A newly opened, zero-energy teaching block at South Lanarkshire College in Scotland has been fitted with a ground source heat pump system from NIBE – helping it become the first building in the UK to achieve a BREEAM sustainability rating of ‘outstanding’.

Situated on the college’s East Kilbride campus, the building has been specifically designed with environmental credentials in mind. Its efficiency-enhancing measures include insulated floors, walls and roofs, triple-glazed windows, low-energy lighting and electrics, rainwater harvesting and solar PV panels on the roof. Partnered with a water-based underfloor heating system, the NIBE F1345 40kW ground source heat pump was specified to meet the heating requirements of the eight-classroom block in the most sustainable, cost-effective and reliable way possible.

The new SLC facility excelled in all 10 BREEAM assessment categories, which range from energy, waste and water to health and wellbeing. The project was given £1.45m in support from South Lanarkshire Trust and £700,000 from the European Regional Development Fund. It was also awarded a further subsidy from South Lanarkshire Council's Renewable Energy Fund.

Robin Adderley, sales and marketing director at NIBE, said: “NIBE has a longstanding relationship with South Lanarkshire College, and we are really pleased to have been a part of this project. The new block sets the bar high for sustainable construction in the UK, which is reflected in its outstanding BREEAM assessment. It’s also a perfect working example of how heat pumps can be the ideal choice for larger-scale applications – helping them to minimise their carbon footprint and keep running costs down in the process.”