Carbon footprint

The Department for Energy and Climate Change would like to engage with experts, academics, organisations, members of the public and other stakeholders to give us their views about proposals to improve the energy performance of heating systems.

Currently heat accounts for around 45% of our energy consumption and a third of all carbon emissions. The UK boiler market is the largest in the world, worth at least £1.3 billion per annum with well over 1.2 million new boilers sold every year just in our homes. In England, 27 million homes use a boiler as the principal technology to provide heating.

The long-term goal is still to move towards more sustainable sources of heat, but the role for conventional systems is expected to remain significant well into the 2030s.

The intention of the DECC is to use an Open Policy Making process that brings together those inside and outside of government interested in contributing to our policy and thinking. They want help in co-designing policies to make sure that they will work in practice, and this process will ensure that different points of view and expertise are taken into account; and that challenges and opportunities are well understood before any firm proposals are made.

To meet the carbon targets most of the cost-effective scenarios require zero carbon emissions from heat in buildings by 2050, with an on-going role for gas heating systems into at least the 2030s. With this ongoing role it feels right to consider ways to improve performance, save carbon and reduce bills from conventional heating systems, as long as it can be cost effective.

Since setting minimum standards in 2005, advances in technology have kept the UK at the forefront of the global boiler market. The DECC would like to consider whether the time is right to raise those standards, and what are the benefits and risks if they do.

For more information regarding the DECC click here.

1 Heat in Buildings Accessed online 18 April 2016 https://www.gov.uk/government/groups/heat-in-buildings

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