I lived near Plas Newydd, on Anglesey, for a few years, and remember it as a fine old mansion which dominated the island: overlooking Snowdonia and perched on the edge of the Menai Straits, it was huge draughty and cold then, and now it is the most polluting of all the properties owned by the National Trust, being dependent as it is on oil – a lot of it – to heat it.
The future, however, looks very different as Plas Newydd is being prepared to use new technology based on heating through sea water, a process which could revolutionise the way in which we heat our homes.
The technology is complex, of course, and involves pumps that suck heat from water, or even the ground using compressors and heat exchangers, but the end result will be a warm building at a constant temperature. What is exciting is that the concept can be adapted to suit many situations, and as electricity comes more and more from renewable sources, the use of heat pumps will become increasingly attractive: CO2 emissions would be cut substantially and there would be substantial financial savings – benefits for the environment and for we who live in it.
There is a lot of water on our Planet, and it is waiting to be used ethically, for the good of us all. How good it would be if heat pumps that operated thanks to our seas, lakes and rivers and new technology then brought benefit back to nature, including our waters. It is so different now, when we take, but give back nothing. Perhaps, at last, Gaia’s voice is being heard.
(Image of Plas Newydd by Waterborough through Wikimedia Commons)