A RENEWABLE energy firm will be using the River Clyde to heat council properties and tower blocks in the Gorbals.

Glasgow City Council’s Contracts and Property Committee agreed to lease land by the river for an energy centre yesterday.

Star Renewable Energy is planning to construct, operate and maintain a facility that will extract water from the Clyde and turn it into heat for nearby council buildings.

Councillors said the move will save £400,000 over 20 years and help towards moving away from gas powered heating.

Andrew Mount from Development and Regeneration Services, said: “If you look at Glasgow City Council’s carbon footprint, around 40 per cent of it is related to supplying heat. So it’s extremely important for decarbonising our economy.”

The heating system will supply Gorbals Leisure Centre, Adelphi Centre and four tower blocks on Ballater Street with low-carbon, low-cost heat and hot water.

A pathway along the Gorbals bank of the River Clyde will be temporary closed and reconstructed.

Mr Mount insisted this would, in the long run, be good for the area, as the pathway is used for “nefarious” reasons at the moment.

But when complete the committee heard the facility will likely be glass-fronted and a visitor attraction to the area.

There is also potential for the heating system to be expanded further afield when it’s up and running.

Mr Mount added the system could be extend further along the waterfront.

Local councillors praised the project.

James Scanlon said: “I’m actually delighted this is going ahead. I’m very enthusiastic.”

The committee agreed to lease the site to Star Renewable Energy for £750 per year for 20 years.