THE world’s leading producer of tartan based in the Borders has announced plans to reduce its carbon footprint.

Lochcarron of Scotland at Waverley Mill in Selkirk has submitted a planning application to Scottish Borders Council to install a solar photo voltaic array to a roof at the premises.

Anna Hinnigan, senior operations manager at Lochcarron, said the company was “committed to integrating and continually improving environmental considerations into all aspects of our business”.

The company has joined forces with South of Scotland Enterprise (SoSE) to reduce its carbon footprint.

Anna said: “The need to balance regenerative production and fair work with decarbonisation can be difficult to navigate, so with the support of SoSE and their Net Zero team since January 2023, we have been working to measure our environmental footprint and develop a credible decarbonisation plan, in line with the Scottish Government’s targets and future environmental requirements.

“By measuring our environmental footprint, we have been able to make a number of changes to our business to become more sustainable, including reducing our usage of fossil fuels for heating and power, improving our recycling and reducing our waste product, and sourcing the wool fibre for our Strome kilt cloth more locally to support Scottish farmers.

“To reduce our carbon usage further, we are proposing to move our electricity supply to our own sustainable source of solar panels. These will be located on the roof of Unit 18.

“By adding the proposed solar panels, we estimate that we will be able to provide a significant percentage of the electricity required to our manufacturing machinery, decarbonising our power usage and reducing manufacturing costs.

“Electricity produced from the proposed solar panels during working hours will be used in our production unit during the day.

"In addition, during periods when the factory is closed, the electricity produced by the proposed panels, will be supplied back to the National Grid and will provide the benefit of additional, green power that will build and improve future energy resilience for Scotland.

“This is another positive opportunity for Lochcarron of Scotland to continue to grow and invest in our business, whilst supporting our local community, and we have the landlord’s support and agreement with these changes.”