CO-OPERATIVE Financial Services, which is currently cladding the landmark CIS tower with solar panels, is to erect wind turbines on top of another of its Manchester city centre sites.
CFS has announced plans to place 24 micro-wind turbines on the roof of its 13-storey Portland Street building, making it the largest ever commercial application of micro-wind turbines in the UK. The turbines will produce 56,000 units of renewable energy each year or almost five per cent of the electricity needs of the building.
CFS say the project – which should be in operation by Christmas – demonstrates that towns and cities can make a contribution to renewable energy generation and ensure that the impact of renewable generation is not borne entirely by the countryside.
Each micro-turbine, which stands around 3m tall and bolts on to the top of a property like a satellite dish, will generate some 1KW of electricity and save around one tonne of carbon dioxide per annum.
CFS is now exploring the possibility of placing micro-wind turbines at other sites within its property portfolio of more than 200 buildings.
Gary Thomas, Head of Property and Facilities at CFS, said "Embedding renewable energy in buildings reduces the need to buy electricity and I anticipate a payback on the initial investment in around three years."
Meanwhile, work on cladding the CIS tower continues apace and is also likely to be completed by the end of the year. It is predicted the panels will create 180,000 units of renewable electricity each year – enough energy to make nine million cups of tea.