• Welcome to Greenwatt Way

  • We make more energy from wind and water, than anyone else in the UK.* But never before have we built a zero carbon home.

    In a ground-breaking research project named 'Greenwatt Way' we have worked with a team of partners to build 10 zero carbon homes in Slough, Berkshire.

    Currently, more than a quarter of the country's CO2 emissions come from our homes. In 2008, the Government confirmed that all new homes built in England will have to be zero carbon from 2016. Our Greenwatt Way project will help us to understand the changes in energy generation and consumption that are required to make that target a reality.

    What is a zero carbon home?

    Zero carbon means we will generate enough energy on site for these homes so that net CO2 emissions are zero over the course of a year. This includes all energy used for heating, hot water, lighting, fans and pumps, cooking and appliances.

    What we aim to achieve

    The main aim of the project is to study energy usage and consumption and the occupants interaction with energy efficient zero carbon homes. Although the industry is constantly revising design codes and standards, very little is understood about the energy requirements of a zero carbon home or what it's like to live in one. 

    The houses have been built from timber frame and masonry block to reflect the different construction methods used across the UK. In addition to testing energy demand the project will gather valuable information helpful to the building sector on issues such as ventilation, air quality and the environmental tolerance of a zero carbon home.

    Greener homes

    The most visually striking aspect of the homes are the solar photovoltaic roof tiles. These solar panels generate up to 63kWp of electricity, providing more than enough renewable electricity for each home. The surplus electricity is sold back to the National Grid.

    Renewable heating and hot water is supplied via a mini district heat scheme, housed in an adjacent energy centre. This plant room includes solar thermal panels, an air source heat pump, a ground source heat pump, a biomass boiler and a spare bay for a future renewable energy technology. Each of these are sized to meet the full heating requirement of the site. The biomass boiler, ground and air source heat pumps run independently to demonstrate that all of these renewable technologies can be installed to generate enough renewable heat to meet zero carbon buildings requirements.

    The homes also include devices to improve energy efficiency and encourage tenants to waste less energy and water. This includes a mechanical ventilation, heat recovery system, and a smart meter. Most homes will include a grey water recycling system which uses recycled bath and shower water to flush toilets and recover waste heat. A rainwater harvesting system collects rainwater which is stored and used to flush toilets.
    The residents also benefit from other perks of leading a sustainable lifestyle including:

    • Reduced energy bills
    • Energy efficient appliances
    • An electric Ford Focus for the tenants to share
    • Fruit trees and space to grow vegetables

    PDF icon PDF file: Inside our zero carbon homes (925KB)

    Most computers will open PDF files automatically. If not, you may need to download Adobe Reader. To do this, please visit the Adobe website.

    The future

    Greenwatt Way is a project designed to make sure that we are well equipped to deliver the energy that you need in a reliable and sustainable way all the way to 2050 and beyond.

    For more information follow Greenwatt Way on Twitter.


     *"We" means the SSE Group, of which SSE Energy Supply Ltd and SSE Generation Ltd are members. SSE Generation Ltd generates more renewable electricity than any other energy company in the UK.
    Based on installed capacity - see SSE Annual Report 2012 (May 2012) and Digest of United Kingdom Energy Statistics.

  • Renewable energy

    Every unit of renewable electricity generated at Greenwatt Way will be eligible for the Government’s new Feed-in Tariff (FiT).

    Learn more 

  • SSE Contracting

    SSE Contracting is one of the country’s leading mechanical and electrical contractors and is experienced in delivering a wide range of services to all industry sectors.
    As part of its involvement with the Greenwatt Way project SSE Contracting can help you with your carbon management through their experience of installing electrical, mechanical and renewable technologies.

    Learn more 

  • Greenwatt Way video

    Greenwatt way RHS widget

    Watch our zero carbon homes being built

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