Thurso College

UHI/NHC Centre

A state of the art Centre for Energy and the Environment is the latest investment in the area by the University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI) at the Environmental Research Institute of the North Highland College (NHC).

The £3m facility, which is to be located on the Thurso campus, will create a step-change in the area’s existing research capacity to deliver research and learning of international standard and national relevance through a flexible, interdisciplinary and integrated community of scholars addressing key challenges of the 21st century. The facility sits alongside a new Engineering Skills Centre on the Thurso campus costing £7-£8m.
Due for completion in November 2010, the centre will support the emerging renewable energy sector by assessing the marine energy resource and promoting understanding of the environmental implications and consequences of developing this resource. As the marine energy sector develops, opportunities for education provision and alignment with other related disciplines, such as engineering, will also be developed. The Centre for Energy and the Environment will enable growth in both fundamental and applied environmental sciences research and this will provide crucial support for the growth of the region. The centre will include provision of research facilities for visiting researchers and enable cross partner curriculum development which optimises links between research and teaching.

Research at the ERI is already very high quality with 85% of an international standard. Provision of these 21st century facilities will attract the best researchers and students internationally.

This exciting project has been made possible through development of a shared vision for the area by public sector agencies working in partnership with the UHI and NHC. A funding package of support has been provided by Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Scottish Funding Council and the European Regional Development Fund.

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