UK invests £80.6m in green heating projects

Nearly 2,000 homes and businesses are set to benefit from a project, which utilises waste heat from a sewer in Bolton

Big Zero Report 2023

A new green heating project has been unveiled, with nearly 2,000 homes and businesses expected to be powered by excess heat extracted from a sewer.

This scheme aims to utilise waste heat from the town’s sewer, as well as heat from sewage and waste hot water, to fuel a new heat pump for Bolton’s first district heating network.

This is one of four green heating initiatives awarded grants from the government’s Green Heat Network Fund.

Projects in Exeter, London, and Hull aim to reduce carbon emissions from homes and businesses, contributing to the UK’s path towards net zero by 2050.

The funding, complemented by over £8 million in government investment, will enhance 34 inefficient heat networks, ensuring upgrades for a more reliable heating supply to more than 9,000 residents, hospital patients, students and public sector workers while also minimising costs.

Heat networks, which supply heating and hot water to multiple buildings from a central source, play a crucial role in the UK’s commitment to reducing carbon emissions, with heating in buildings contributing to 30% of all UK emissions.

Lord Callanan, Minister for Energy Efficiency and Green Finance, said: “These innovative projects will help drive down energy costs while also demonstrating why the UK has led the way in cutting carbon emissions.

“They show how energy sources can be found in the most unexpected places – as more homes and businesses will benefit from cleaner heating and lower energy bills.”

Sarah Honan, Head of Policy at the Association for Decentralised Energy, said: “Heat networks are a key solution in the mix of technologies that will make up the energy system of the future – not only will they be essential in decarbonising our homes and offices, factories and shops, but without them, the UK will not be able to build the truly resilient and flexible grid needed for the future.”

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