Live updates

Longtown solar panels 'increase' bills

A groups of people in Longtown, Cumbria say their electricity bills have more than doubled since solar panels were installed on their roofs.

Riverside Housing Association fitted the green scheme in Spring 2012.

Craig Smith, who lives in Moor Road, told ITV Border it "was gutting'".

He added: "I'd really like to go back to the price I was paying."

Riverside said they were working with those affected.

"A few tenants have reported to us that they are experiencing high fuel bills. The reasons for this appear to be varied and depends on their personal circumstances, the heating system installed and the property type. We are in discussions with these tenants to address their concerns. We installed 175 new heating systems in Longtown and there are only five outstanding complaints. All other tenants have confirmed that they have no concerns and or have reduced heating bills following the installation of the new boilers."

– Riverside Housing Association


New panels produce 'a significant amount of electricity'

"It is a 50kw system, it will produce about 4% of electricity for our campus.

" The projections are that we will produce a significant amount of electricity, and we have a pay back period of 7 years.

"The panels last around 20 years. It is vital to show our commitment to long termenvironmental sustainability, and this is a big step towards reducing ourCO2 by 2015."

– Robert Hewitt, Facilities Manager, Scottish Borders Campus.

Solar panels light up Borders college

Around 200 solar panels have been installed by Borders College and Heriot-Watt University at their shared Borders College Campus in Galashiels.

The installation is the largest of its type in the Scottish Borders.

The project is one of many being undertaken by the Campus, in a bid to lower their CO2 emissions.

The new panels are expected to produce over 42,000 kilowatt hours of electricity every year, which will reduce electricity costs and cut consumption by around 4%.

The panels are expected to continue to produce electricity for up to 40 years.

"This development demonstrates Borders College's continuing commitment to environmental sustainability and is one of a range of measures that the College is taking to reduce its carbon emissions.

"More than that, it is an excellent example of how the partnership with Heriot-Watt University continues to support an efficient and sustainable further and higher education campus in the Scottish Borders."

– Pete Smith, Director of Finance and Resources at Borders College