Potential for 180 new district heating networks in UK if financial backing secured

Date: 24/03/2015

Diarmaid Williams reports in Cogeneration & On-Site Power Production® (COSPP) that the Association for Decentralised Energy (ADE) is urging the British government to formulate a new district heating policy in order to bring about 180 new heat networks currently on the table.

Dr. Tim Rotheray, director of ADE said, “The Government has made a significant achievement in facilitating over 180 heat network feasibility projects around the UK, which, if built, could prompt a capital investment to the tune of £1.6 billion.”

“However, there is a risk that some of these projects may never go any further than being lines on a page.”

“It will be vital that a new government puts in place an investable district heating policy to give local authorities the support they need to take these projects through this tricky next stage.”

The UK’s Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Ed Davey recently told a Westminster gathering that there is a big case for significant investment to be made in decentralised energy as a means of boosting the country’s energy efficiency.

Speaking to COSPP at the launch of a report by the ADE, he said, “I think you can make a big case on efficiency grounds for massive investment in decentralized energy. I think it is going to come from both a community energy basis, with local communities wanting to have more control of the electricity and heat that they use but also of course from industry which can reap huge benefits through cutting carbon emissions and become more competitive. So there’s a real opportunity there and I want to make sure the work we’ve done to begin the revolution continues.”

An extra £3 million of funding to set up heat networks was awarded to 55 local authorities across England and Wales this week.

The new funding will support 74 low-carbon heat projects designed to provide more efficient heat to buildings and potentially lower heating bills in local areas while helping to cut carbon emissions, tackle fuel poverty and boost local jobs.

Source: IDEA