Given the social and political imperatives around reducing carbon emissions, one would expect government policy to be fully supportive of low carbon heating, as demonstrated by its recent Clean Growth Strategy. However, the challenge is now on industry to deliver with a significant barrier being the economics associated with the different low carbon heating technologies.
So can how can the UK make the transition to low carbon heating?
Some useful insights came from a recent report by the Energy Research Partnership (ERP) and the implications for both customers and industry in making the transition to low carbon heat:
The transition to a decarbonised heat system will require investment and long-term planning, which is supported by clear policy guidance. There are both opportunities and challenges associated with each of the proposed low carbon heating options, which need to be examined in more detail.
While a natural gas fired combined heat and power (CHP) solution has been regarded as the best option for decarbonising heat, this view may now be challenged in light of the increasing supply of electricity to the National Grid by renewable energy sources. Similarly, there is a debate about the extent to which government policy should support gas CHP as the most economically viable technology for decarbonising heat compared to other power sources.
Bevan Brittan has a dedicated Energy team which advises on low carbon heating options like heat networks, renewable energy infrastructure and energy from waste facilities. We have worked with property developers, funders, energy generators, infrastructure providers, ESCOs and public sector organisations. If you would like further information on this topic, please contact a member of our team.
A copy of the ERP's report can be found here.