The Groundsman

June 2012

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the Groundsman June 2012 FEATURE 13 Environmental evangelists! In winning the 2011 IOG Industry Award for Environmental Project of the Year, Ashton on Mersey Cricket and Tennis Club has achieved some outstanding savings in its energy usage – indeed, an overall saving of more than 40% – and is probably the first sports club in the country to commit to and attain a carbon neutral policy A view of the club's Solar PV panels In an attempt to reduce the amount of energy used within the club and by club members while on club duty, and its impact on the environment, in 2006 Ashton on Mersey Cricket and Tennis Club embarked on a five-year Environment Plan and Policy Document. The club recognised it consumed too much energy and wasted natural resources – its carbon footprint of 25.61 tonnes CO2 per annum reflected this – and the aim was to reduce electricity and water usage while also minimising the production of waste. In tandem, the contact for the supply of electricity to the club, which was established in 1897 and has been on its current site at Sale, Cheshire, adjacent to the River Mersey since 1919, was due for renewal. An energy audit revealed that consumption over the previous 12 months was 39,262 kWh. Under the proposed new contract, an all-in rate of 10p/kWh was determined. So, assuming consumption continued at the same rate, that would equate to an annual expenditure of almost £4,000! With the inevitable rise in electricity costs, the club's long-term prospects were at risk. (The club does not have a gas supply to the site.) Ambitiously, it then set out to achieve a 45 per cent reduction in energy use and a 50 per cent cut in its carbon footprint. And by October 2010 - at the end of year four of the energy reduction plan - the club had achieved a 40.84% reduction in the carbon footprint, a 50.36% reduction in energy bought from the grid and an overall energy use reduction of 40.82%. Photos: Colin Hoskins

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