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Our BatchGeo world MAP shows the locations of green architecture, green building and renewable energy projects featured on Solaripedia.

Project

Solar Toilets Sell Power in Wales, UK

Credits: ©2009 BBC News

A small town center public toilet block is powered by solar panels and the town is selling electricity to the National Grid to offset its energy bill. The loos in Llanidloes, Powys, have been kitted out with panels to heat water, power hand dryers and lights. The company behind the project said the toilets could produce about one kilowatt of electricity, with surplus power sold to the National Grid. The toilets have recently been refurbished at a cost of £35,000. Although not self-sufficient in electricity, when the toilet block is able to produce more power than it needs, it is able to sell the excess power to the grid. It is initially sold to an energy company offering a scheme to buy back the electricity, said Llani Solar, the company which installed the panels. The toilets have two sets of solar panels: one powers the water system, while photovoltaic panels convert sunlight into electricity.

 

Solar Toilet in Wales

Town regeneration group Llani Ltd applied for funding for the project from the Welsh Assembly Government and renewable energy groups after the toilets were closed by Powys council in 2006.

Nick Venti of Llani Ltd said: "People were disappointed when the toilets closed.

"We were concerned about the effect on tourism and the impact on businesses.

"When we decided to refurbish the toilets we wanted to install solar panels to keep our energy costs down, and it also fits in with the ethos of developing a carbon-neutral Llanidloes.

"When the panels produce more power than is needed electricity goes into the National Grid and that is offset against our energy bill."

Chris Lord-Smith of Llani Solar said about one kilowatt of energy was being produced.

"This sort of thing is quite normal now when building public and private buildings, but it's very unusual on a public loo," he added.

"Some panels on the loos are elevated and they heat the water, while the photovoltaic panels, which lie on top of the toilet block, provide electricity."


Resources

Glasu Renewable Powys (Wales, UK)

Natural Solutions (Wales)