The Scottish government have published proposals aimed at fully developing the country’s energy efficiency potential, with district heating to take a vital role.
Energy minister Fergus Ewing said, “This concise heat policy statement sets out the Scottish Government’s framework for achieving a resilient heat system which transitions to affordable low-carbon heat and seizes the economic opportunities that this transformation offers.”
The statement details measures to supply heat efficiently and at the lowest cost to consumers, as well as renewable and low-carbon sources part of a holistic approach to helping Scotland reach its decarbonisation target.
Heat equipment and energy-efficiency improvements worth more than £100 billion will be replaced or installed between 2010 and 2050, according to government data.
Meanwhile local authorities are to receive support to develop a “strategic approach to district heating”, which can provide heat to homes and businesses more cheaply and efficiently.
The policy also retains the target to have 40,000 homes connected to district or communal heating by 2020.
Niall Stuart, chief executive of industry body Scottish Renewables, told the Scotsman newspaper, “Heating our homes and businesses accounts for more than half of Scotland’s energy use, and most of our carbon emissions. We need to totally change the way we produce heat if we are going to get anywhere near our climate change targets, and that is going to be a long, difficult and complex transition.”
“Heating is also the main element of our energy bills and the key driver of fuel poverty, so there are many ways in which change here can benefit the country.”