STAFF and students at Borders College are feeling flushed with success after their sewage secured a place on a national awards shortlist.

Last year the Galashiels campus teamed up with SHARC Energy Systems to install the UK's first sewage and waste water heating system.

The pioneering installation provides 95 per cent of the college's heating.

And the project has now been shortlisted for the prestigious Green Gown Awards.

Borders College vice principal Pete Smith told us: "This recognition of such an innovative project is great news for the college.

"To be the first in the UK to use this technology meant that we had to have a degree of faith in the project team but now that it’s operational, we are seeing the benefits in terms of carbon reduction and cost savings.

"We look to continue a long and successful partnership with SHARC. ”

This year’s UK and Ireland Green Gown Awards’ finalists are at the forefront of the effort to deliver solutions to the most pressing global challenges.

Having been a leading participant in the United Nations negotiations to develop 17 Global Goals for Sustainable Development – the UK and Ireland must fulfil its commitment to deliver the goals.

For this to happen, it is clear from the hundreds of applicants to the Green Gown Awards that the Government must invest more in the solutions being developed in our higher and further education institutes.

After a tough judging session, the applicants were whittled down four finalists in each category.

Projects range from electric pool cars to music albums dedicated to climate change, and include ambitious zero carbon targets, pioneering new ways to create heat sources from waste and the largest Passivhaus building in the UK.

Borders College is amongst the shortlisted entries competing for the best newcomer category.

Robert Hewitt, facilities manager at the Scottish Borders Campus, added: "It’s fantastic that the College have been nominated, this is the culmination of many years of hard work to become the first adopters of this technology in the UK.

"We look forward to working closely with SHARC Energy Systems over the coming years to further enhance the technology and continue to reduce our impact on the environment."

The winners of each category will be announced at a ceremony in Manchester on November 15.

The others who are shortlisted in the best newcomer are MidKent College, Northumbria University and Southampton Solent University.