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Blair report backs heat pumps

A Tony Blair backed report has said heat pumps must be deployed in 50 to 70 per cent of buildings by 2050.

The Climate Group report titled Breaking the Climate Deadlock: Technology for a Low Carbon Future was released ahead of this week's G8 Summit which will discuss climate change abtement.

It argues more investment in research, development, incentives and deployment is needed to radically cut energy use and carbon emissions from transport, buildings and lighting.

Among the targets detailed in the report were ensuring heat pumps achieve wide spread take up in industrialised countries and solar space and water heating is given the support needed to ensure it deliver s 3000 GW capacity by 2050.

The report said raising effiiciency in the building stock was important in the short and medium term, but added:” To achieve long-term savings, investment is also required for new heat pump and solar space and heating technologies.

On energy efficiency the report said: “To achieve emission reductions to 2020, a strong focus on energy efficiency in buildings and appliances is required.

'Large potential savings can be made through improved building regulation and standards; an estimated 75% of abatement in the building sector shows overall net economic benefits.

'This will be especially important in large merging economies, which have high rates of new building construction. In developed countries, retrofitting existing buildings, especially to improve insulation and heating systems, can deliver significant improvements.

'Standards to improve energy efficiency in appliances and air conditioning systems will also be important for mid-term reductions.'

At the launch of the report Tony Blair said: “This report shows how major reductions even by 2020 are achievable if we focus action on certain key technologies, deploy policies that have been proven to work, and invest now for the development of those future technologies that will take time to mature.

“And these technologies bring economic and social opportunities too. Just as investing in electrification, railways and the internet led to economic growth in the past, investing in clean energy can help reignite the global economy now.

“This report shows that the challenge of combating climate change remains formidable; but it is do-able. This is not mission impossible.