BlueSky helps Hastings tackle fuel poverty

BlueSky helps Hastings tackle fuel poverty

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Leicestershire, UK, August 10, 2007: BlueSky, the aerial mapping specialist, has produced a colour coded temperature map of every property in Hastings in a bid to help the Council tackle fuel poverty and climate change. The map shows the level of heat lost from every building highlighting properties with high levels of heat loss and therefore poor insulation or properties with low levels of heat loss that may be ‘under’ heated or even empty. The Council is using the BlueSky data to target remedial action on Council owned properties and identify households that may be eligible for a range of grants and additional support.

The property level thermal infrared survey data was captured using an airborne thermal infrared sensor, a modified version of technology used by the military for night vision. Captured during an early winter evening in order to capture the widest variations in temperature the raw survey data was then processed by BlueSky to calculate building heat loss scores for every building polygon in the Council’s Ordnance Survey base mapping. The processed data was delivered to the Council as a colour coded map displaying building scores, providing an instant snapshot of the borough and as a map accurate dataset for use in the Council’s GIS.

The thermal survey was initially commissioned by the Policy Department to help target fuel poverty. Correlation of the thermal values with other council records, including deprivation indicators, housing stock condition reports and the Councils address database allows officers to quickly identify both council and privately owned properties with high levels of heat loss and therefore potentially poor insulation. A range of services, including grants, can then be offered to residents in an effort to increase energy efficiency.

“The thermal survey data gives us additional intelligence to effectively target households for remedial action and financial assistance,” said Chantal Lass, Sustainability Policy Officer at Hastings Borough Council. “In the future we are hoping to publish the data online, giving residents and businesses the chance to review their own thermal footprint and, where necessary, implement energy efficiency initiatives. The data also helps us to meet our responsibilities as required by the Home Energy Conservation Act (HECA) including an energy conservation study and progress reporting” added Lass.