Flower power! Gerbera grower bags green trophy

A Kiwi flower grower has bagged a green trophy for powering its business entirely with off-cuts from its plants. The family-run New Zealand nursery which grows gerberas installed a boiler […]

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By Vicky Ellis

A Kiwi flower grower has bagged a green trophy for powering its business entirely with off-cuts from its plants.

The family-run New Zealand nursery which grows gerberas installed a boiler which runs on its plant waste.

K&L Nurseries produces more than two million stems of cut flowers a year and needs constant heat in its glasshouses for year-round growing.

The project has cut energy costs by NZ $100,000 (£50.6k) a year and 3,500 tonnes of CO2 emissions a year.

Mike Underhill, Chief Executive of New Zealand’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority which dished out the awards said: “K&L’s achievement demonstrates you don’t need to be a large corporate to make significant savings from improved energy use.

“Energy efficiency and renewable energy delivers equally important benefits for smaller businesses.”

Another award winner was a childcare centre in Kawakawa which is fully moulded into the landscape with a green roof.

Judges praised it for being around 67% more energy efficient than a standard building, with passive heating and cooling to reduce energy use.

It also uses solar thermal technology for hot water and under-floor heating, plus it is fully glazed on one side for maximum daylight and passive solar heat.