COUNCIL chiefs 'were not interested' in a potential multi-million-pound renewable energy centre for Inverclyde before the company behind the idea made it a reality in Clydebank, the district's MP has declared.

Ronnie Cowan told how he introduced Star Renewable Energy bosses to Municipal Buildings officials five years ago, only for the local authority to pass-up on the opportunity.

Star has since set up a £20m water-sourced heat pump system to provide energy to a major new housing and leisure development at Queens Quay in Clydebank.

Meanwhile, it has emerged that the council here has missed out on a further two similar projects.

Mr Cowan said: "Star Renewable Energy provide groundbreaking sustainable heating solutions for district heating systems.

"Queens Quay is a £250 million regeneration of a former shipyard in Clydebank into houses, leisure facilities and amenities and at its heart is a £20 million state of the art energy centre.

"It is the first large scale water sourced heat pump scheme of its kind in Scotland.

"I am annoyed, because five years ago I suggested such a scheme for Inverclyde.

"Star Energy came to Inverclyde at my invitation and explained to Inverclyde Council what they could do.

"But the council were not interested."

Mr Cowan added: "Hopefully with a new emerging positive mindset we will be better placed to grasp such opportunities next time they come knocking on our door."

The local authority defended itself over the MP's claims.

A council spokesman said: "At that time there were no opportunities to consider a project, however, since then we have submitted funding bids for two similar projects and unfortunately those were unsuccessful.

"We're always keen to listen to ideas and explore opportunities to make environmental improvements."

The local authority did not respond to questions as to why there was no opportunity to consider the Star Energy scheme, or give details about the two other projects it missed out on.