ORGANISATION // Coimhearsnachd Bharraidh agus Bhatarsaidh (Barra & Vatersay Community) Ltd
PROJECT // Save a Penny
TOTAL PROJECT COST // £74,208.39
LEADER FUNDING PROVIDED // £32,422.39
Water tends to be taken for granted in Scotland as it rains a lot. It is also essential for drinking, personal hygiene, household hygiene and disposal of waste via black and grey water. What tends not to be appreciated is it takes a lot of energy to collect, treat and pump water to households. A further input of energy required for household hot water supplies; about a quarter of household’s energy bill relates to the heating of water in the home. With usage increasing and the risk of prolonged dry weather seasonal shortages can also occur with the Western Isles having experienced drought condition in 2012.
Against this background Scottish Water is seeking to promote the benefits of using water wisely, help protect future water supplies and keep more water in the natural environment. The aim is not to restrict water use, rather it is about using water wisely, avoiding wasting water and helping householders benefit from the energy savings where hot water is saved. Pilots have already been undertaken on the mainland as part of the programme. Building on the success of these pilots, Scottish Water would like to pilot the initiative on one or more islands. Encouraging householders to use water wisely will help minimise the impact of the infrastructure required to treat and process water and build resilience into communities. It will also give islanders the opportunity to benefit from the free water saving devices to help them save energy as well as water which will be particularly beneficial for any who are vulnerable to fuel poverty.
Coimhearsnachd Bharraidh agus Bhatarsaidh (Barra & Vatersay Community) Ltd were approach to act as a local partner in the programme. Given the local company are already involved with the COBEN local energy plan pilot and have a track record of being involved in renewable energy projects the proposal was well received. The idea of using a new toilet/shower/laundry block to showcase innovative water saving technologies and act as a local focal point for interpretive panel and advice was suggested to Scottish Water and supported.