ACC Liverpool awarded £1.4m in funding in its latest step towards achieving Net Zero status

The ACC Liverpool Group has been awarded funding in its latest step towards achieving Net Zero status by 2030.

The organisation, operator of the M&S Bank Arena, Exhibition Centre Liverpool and convention centre, is set to receive £1.4m from the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme which is delivered by Salix Finance.

The money from the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero has been awarded to Liverpool City Council as owners of the campus.

It is one of 180 public sector organisations awarded funds from the government Phase 3b of the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme for heat decarbonisation and energy efficient projects.  The money will be used to replace hot water boilers in the arena and adjoining convention centre – installed when the venue opened in 2008 – with air sourced heat pumps.

The project is currently expected to directly save more than 4,200 tonnes of carbon over the lifetime of the project in addition to reducing running and maintenance costs.

Eddie dos Santos, director of operations and venue management at The ACC Liverpool Group, said: “Environment, sustainability and climate action are key focuses for our Social Value Impact Plan which we launched in 2021.

“We have already made significant progress across the campus with a number of initiatives and are striving to implement as many changes as we can to make events that we host as sustainable as possible for organisers and visitors.

“This project will enable us to make massive reductions in carbon emissions from the existing equipment and reduce our annual running costs.”

A number of measures have already been taken by The ACC Liverpool Group as part of its commitment towards sustainability in the events sector including signing the Net Zero Carbon Events pledge and setting its own target of Net Zero by 2030, in line with Liverpool City Council.  It achieved the Green Meetings Silver award provided by Green Tourism following an assessment that examined all areas of the business involved with delivering conferences and exhibitions.  ACC Liverpool became the first large-scale conference venue in the UK to join isla – an independent industry body created to support the events sector’s transition to a net-zero future. 

The organisation – which recently installed LED lights across the campus – aims to maintain zero to landfill status, support the development of super low carbon events and reduce single-use plastics. 

Liverpool City Council, owners of the campus, nominated The ACC Liverpool Group to receive the funding for the development which will be installed before the end of the year and will not affect any events taking place. 

Council Leader, Cllr Liam Robinson, who leads on Liverpool City Council’s Climate Action and Net Zero programmes, said: “I’m delighted that The ACC Liverpool Group is taking decarbonisation extremely seriously and is making as many changes as possible to how it operates and functions.

“It’s a great example of how a business can reduce its carbon footprint whilst continuing to be successful. Any step towards carbon reduction is to be welcomed, and that is a message we can all embrace.

“Every effort will make a difference, no matter how big or by whom – starting today. We owe it to future generations to do all we can to prevent the climate crisis becoming a global catastrophe.”

Simon Pettett from Salix Finance said: “Salix is delighted to be able to support this project and work with the city council on its decarbonisation journey and meeting the challenges around meeting net zero.

“This work should have a significant impact, reducing the carbon emissions and making these buildings more comfortable buildings in which to work.”

Tom Griffin, managing director of CorEnergy carrying out the project, added: “Having worked closely with The ACC Liverpool Group over the previous 12 months, CorEnergy is very pleased to continue our relationship with the organisation to support its journey towards Net Zero.  The project is a fantastic example of how a multi-technology approach involving LED lighting and controls and air sourced heat pumps (ASHPs) can be used to drive material carbon savings and reduce energy costs.”