The progress we’ve made since starting our BWC Boreholes | News

The progress we’ve made since starting our BWC Boreholes

Sustainability is important to us. As we work towards becoming net-zero with the support of our Estates team, who are now eight months into drilling 14 of our ground source heat boreholes, we’re happy to share that we’re almost there.

With six boreholes positioned at our Children’s Hospital and eight being created at our Women’s Hospital, we have now completed five out of six at our Children’s Hospital site, and five out of eight at our Women’s Hospital site.

What is a borehole?

A borehole is a narrow shaft bored into the ground used to extract heat from the ground. In order to ensure no environmental implications, we ensure all water extracted from the bore holes is supplemented to keep the water table balanced. In the processes of extracting and supplementing water, we are able to generate heat from the boreholes and transfer this into energy. 

Graham Walsh, our Estates team Senior Project Manager shared details with us about the next steps of the project once the remaining four boreholes have been drilled.

Graham said: “After we complete our drilling, we need to complete a step called ‘enabling the boreholes’ which means turning them into a permanent fixtures. Then we need to connect them up to our energy centre where we have three outputs –water for heating, water for cooling and water for energy generation.”

Once the boreholes have been completed, the trenching process will begin to connect the boreholes and additional borehole will be drilled for the Environmental Agency to test the water, and thermal vessels will be fitted. At our Children’s Hospital, the thermal vessels will be designed in the style of a spaceship and will replace the bridge that connects our hospital.

Overall, the energy produced will equate to 2.7 Mega Watts (MW) of power, helping us to produce carbon-free power.

Graham said: “We’re excited to see this project underway and progressing so quickly. There is still a way to go to becoming self-sufficient but the plans are in place with our dedicated teams and contractors supporting us along the way. We’ve also released new car parking areas at our Women’s Hospital now that a number of our boreholes have been completed.”

Stay tuned for more information about our BWC Boreholes net-zero journey.

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