UK confirms commitment to district heating

The UKCHPA has welcomed the publication of the government’s heat strategy paper, “The Future of Heating: Meeting the Challenge“, which paves the way for a major programme of investment in new district heating infrastructure in communities across Britain.

The paper, launched by Energy & Climate Secretary Ed Davey MP, sets out measures to drive efficiency, cut costs and reduce emissions from heat supply to businesses, communities and households.
Ed Davey
The strategy confirms far reaching proposals to invest in new district heating networks in towns and cities, to operate alongside and in some cases displace gas networks. Underpinning the policy is the establishment of a new Heat Networks Delivery Unit within DECC that will provide support to local authorities and communities in accelerating decision-making and new project development.

In an emailed statement Graham Meeks, Director of industry body CHPA, stated: ‘This is the next big step in our energy infrastructure renewal, starting in the very heart of communities up and down Britain. Together with pioneering initiatives already underway in London and other cities, the measures announced today could accelerate early investment of around à‚£300 million in new low-carbon infrastructure, and provide the platform for an estimated à‚£2bn of investment each year in the coming decades. With that will come tens of thousands of local jobs in engineering, contracting and operations.

Meanwhile Ian Whitelock, Joint Managing Director of Vital Energi, one of the UK’s leading district heating developers also welcomed the announcement:

‘The Government’s decision to back district heating underlines what many local authorities and property developers have already realised, that heat networks can offer better long-term value for heat consumers when compared to the traditional utility solution. Our experience shows that when clients and consumers are equipped with a full understanding of the commercial and environmental issues, district heating will often emerge as a winner.

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