JGM Helps Forestry & Land Scotland towards their Zero Carbon Plan

Project Background

In 2022 JGM were tasked with upgrading Forestry and Land Scotland’s District Heating systems across the Glentress Estate. This upgraded District Heating solution would replace existing biomass heating and would set Glentress on the road to 5th Generation District Heating. 5th gen District Heating uses near ambient temperatures as part of a decentralised heat network, with local exchange of thermal energy at individual buildings. As with gen 4, this type of Cold District Heat Network does not use combustion on site and produces zero CO2 and zero NO2.

This development will help Forestry and Land Scotland with their Climate Change Plan and their goals of:

  • Reduce emissions from its business.
  • Reduce emissions before considering offsetting.
  • Contribute to the organisation’s Climate Plan ambitions.
  • Reduce emissions from their own travel, buildings, waste, and operations.
  • Eliminate emissions from the use of combustible fuel in heating by 2030.

All of these steps will help Forestry and Land Scotland to achieve Net Zero emissions sooner through early action, as highlighted in their Climate Change Plan.

What is Net Zero?

Net Zero is a state of balance where an equivalent amount of emissions will be sequestered as are emitted. The Scottish Government has committed to achieving a Net Zero society by 2045. This is 5 years ahead of the rest of the UK. Renewable energy can help to achieve this by providing energy with less emissions as can the planting of more trees which remove CO2 from the atmosphere.


JGM had to provide heating and hot water to the Glentress estate, causing minimal disruption and maintaining live services for the continued running of the facility’s internationally significant events, such as the Downhill Mountain-biking World Championships during the project. The design called for the upgrade of a number of key components on the system, whilst much of the infrastructure for the heat network was to be retained.

We installed Air Source Heat Pumps to upgrade the existing Biomass Heating.
Moving away from an earlier, combustion powered district heat network posed some challenges, including the physical size of the pipework in the ground, but the main challenge was finding the right solution for each building on the Estate Network.


In order to upgrade the existing solutions as efficiently and sustainably as possible, JGM, along with Peter McElroy, used unique and innovative solutions for hot water production. In line with CIBSE Best Practice, including the new CP1 document, the maximum available heat is extracted from the Heat Network, with local electrical top-up used in each building.
Fortunately, the original design for the network was sustainability orientated and each building already has underfloor heating installed, allowing a simple transition to the low-grade heat network.
Domestic Hot water production was significantly more involved and required careful design and implementation for each building.

With support from McDonald Water Storage, a new and innovative in-line domestic hot water heater was developed to meet the specific requirements of the Office building. More traditional pressurised storage was used for the café and a vented high capacity thermal store used for the showers; which allowed for high instantaneous flow rates without excess stored potable water during off-peak times.


Forestry and Land Scotland stated:

“JGM have delivered a complex district ASHP replacement scheme following the failing of the existing biomass boiler system. They always conducted themselves in a very professional manner demonstrating a good understanding of the requirements and the level of service required. Their workmanship and attention to detail has been extremely good resulting in minimal disruption for one of our main visitor sites.”




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