Earlier this year, the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) announced a new heat commission. Working with the University of Birmingham, the new commission is set to help business leaders and policy makers address the challenges of reaching net-zero emissions.
Here, we’ll look at the changes in residential heating and how they could aid the UK in reaching net zero emissions.
Gas boilers to be phased out by 2025
The new heat commission introduced by the CBI, wants to phase out gas boilers. It states that no new gas boilers should be installed from 2025. Without phasing them out, experts believe there is no chance of the UK meeting its net zero emissions by 2050.
The goal is to have hydrogen-ready boilers, known to be much better for the environment. It isn’t just the type of boiler that makes a difference to emissions either. The standard of boiler care can affect emissions too. Boilers need to be regularly maintained to ensure they are as energy efficient as possible.
The Renewable Heat Incentive extends to 2022
As well as the new heat commission, the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, announced in his first budget that the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) schemes were now set to extend to March 2022. This increases the deadline by a year.
The RHI was formed in April 2014, to encourage businesses, households and communities to install renewable energy technologies. It is designed to combat the effects of climate change and has been extended in light of Covid-19 and green protests.
An additional £10 million has also been allocated for 2020-2021. This is to design and deliver net-zero programmes and policies.
The future of residential heating
The future of residential heating is set to look a lot different to what it does now. Experts in the industry are currently looking into new technologies which would reduce carbon emissions, as well as make energy more affordable. However, this isn’t going to be easy with existing homes. The Committee for Climate Change estimates it will cost around £26,000 to convert properties to a low-carbon heating system.
The CBI has also encouraged the government to extend its Clean Heat grant scheme. This provides homeowners with up to £4,000 to make energy improvements within the property.
While switching residential properties to a heat pump may prove too uncostly, hydrogen powered systems could be an alternative. When hydrogen is burnt, it produces only water rather than carbon dioxide. Therefore, this is technology most experts are looking into to achieve net zero emissions.
The recent Covid-19 pandemic temporarily put climate change issues on the backburner. However, the above are just some of the schemes being implemented to help the UK achieve zero-net emissions by 2050.