The Heat Networks (Scotland) Bill has passed into law after a unanimous vote by the Scottish Parliament. The most significant part of the Bill covers the introduction of heat network licensing in combination with a requirement of heat network consent • The UK government invests £40 million to support polluting industries in using greener technology for heating • Plans for a new facility which will be connected to the Mersey Heat Network in Liverpool have been approved • Read more about sustainable heating and cooling developments in the UK in the February news update
The Heat Networks (Scotland) Bill was introduced in March 2020 and has now passed into law following a unanimous vote by the Scottish Parliament. The new bill makes Scotland the first country in the UK to support the growth of heat networks through legislation.
The most significant part of the Bill covers the introduction of heat network licensing, meaning that suppliers of thermal energy through heat networks are required to hold a heat networks license. The license requirements can differ between operators to be flexible depending on operator size and abilities. There is no definitive time stamp on a license, but it can be revoked by the licensing authority. The licensing will work in combination with a requirement of heat network consent, which will ensure that not only the operators are suitable, but also local factors (e.g. fuel poverty) are considered.
By scaling up the deployment of heat networks, greenhouse gas emissions are estimated to be reduced with the equivalent of 90,000 cars, and households are expected to save £130 in yearly heating costs. Pending a new assessment conducted in the spring, benefits are expected to be even greater than current projections.
The investment will be made available through the government’s Industrial Energy Transformation Fund, which has a total funding of £289 million up to 2024. The funding will be offered to energy-intensive sectors such as steel, pharmaceuticals, paper and food and drink, where businesses can apply for grants ranging from £100,000 to £14 million.
Businesses can use the grants to improve industrial processes and reduce energy consumption, i.e. through the installation of heat pumps to replace gas boilers and improving the use of heat recovery technology to utilise waste heat.
The investment is the second competition window offered through the Industrial Energy Transformation Fund, with the first one taking place in 2020 where businesses benefitted from £31 million in grants. For this round, the minimum grant has been more than halved to encourage flexibility for smaller businesses.
Plans for a new facility which will be connected to the Mersey Heat Network in Liverpool have been approved by Liverpool City Council. The Mersey Heat Network is established and run by Peel Energy, developed to support the Liverpool Waters mixed use real estate development. The plans for the new facility were put forward by Peel NRE to provide low carbon heat and hot water for domestic and commercial premises.
The new facility will provide the Mersey Heat Network with heat through the use of water source heat pumps and thermal stores. Two 3MW water source heat pumps will absorb heat from the Leeds/Liverpool canal before distributing it back into the dock system, and two 260 cubic metre thermal stores for hot water will be installed.
Sweden is at the forefront of decentralised heat networks technology. Our aim for “Sustainable Heating & Cooling by Sweden” is to facilitate knowledge sharing between British, French and Swedish stakeholders and develop and encourage environmental and economic best practice.
To find out how we can help you and your organisation, please contact our London or Paris-based “SHC” teams. We can introduce you to leading consultants, suppliers of technology and services who will be pleased to share know-how of the development of sustainable heating & cooling solutions.