Decarbonising heat in the UK – turning a challenge into a business opportunity

Guest article from the Department for International Trade of the United Kingdom

The UK’s 10 point plan for a green industrial revolution, our Net Zero Strategy and a raft of other strategies and initiatives put the UK on course to be carbon neutral by 2050. Reaching net zero means tackling all sources of carbon emissions – and currently heating for homes and workspaces contributes to almost a quarter of our emissions.  By making use of a combination of technologies, the UK is committed to minimising emissions and maximising energy performance. This involves large-scale transformation and presents enormous business opportunity – but we need to act now to develop the market and bring down costs for energy efficient low-carbon heat.

The UK has in recent years been focused on gas as a lower carbon fuel - in 2020 some 1.7 m domestic gas boilers were installed in the UK. But it's now clear that we will be moving rapidly away from gas as seen in the commitment to install at least 600,000 heat pumps per year by 2028. Heat networks will play a critical role too in delivering low and zero carbon heat into dense urban areas. The UK heat network project pipeline is being valued at £1.2 billion (one of the largest in Europe) which we expect to grow rapidly as we bring forward zoning designations and heat network regulation. 

England’s North – the Northern Powerhouse - is particularly rich in decarbonisation of heat opportunities; for example, the North East and Tees Valley host a heat network project pipeline worth around £500 million. The hydrogen landscape in the Northern Powerhouse is also rapidly evolving and the UK will take major strategic decisions on the role of hydrogen for heat by 2026.

We are delighted to participate in this year’s E-world to discuss and highlight the UK’s low carbon heat opportunities and we hope to meet you at our seminar on “Low carbon heat challenges and business opportunities on the UK’s path towards net zero”.

The event is part of the forum program at E-world energy & water 2022 and will take place on the first day of the trade fair, June 21, 2022, from 4:00 to 5:00 pm at the Infrastructure Forum in hall 4. Registration is not necessary. All you need is a trade fair ticket.

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