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Inquiry launched to urge government to address fuel policy

After months of research, Carbon Connect is preparing to launch the latest in its Future Heat series of inquiries, Policy for Heat: Transforming the system, on 14 October in Parliament.

Carbon Connect said that the government needs to urgently produce and implement a long-term strategy for decarbonising heat for buildings.

According to the recently revised official government figures and definition of fuel poverty, there are currently 2.35 million households in fuel poverty in England alone. This is 10% of all households in England.

Carbon Connect said that increased integration between renewable heat and energy efficiency policies could put the government in a better position to effectively target fuel poverty.

Its inquiry follows sister report Pathways for Heat: Low carbon heat for buildings, also from the Future Heat series.

Pathways for Heat called on the government to set heat as a priority for the coming decade and specifically focused on heating buildings sustainably.

The government has an “ambition” – not an official target – to meet 12% of heat demand from renewable sources by 2020; at the moment, Carbon Connect said this is looking unlikely.

Policy for Heat has brought together a wide cross-section of industry and business members, academics and experts in the field in order to lay out a set of policies that could help the government decarbonise the heat system in the most cost-effective way.

Carbon Connect manager Owain Mortimer said: “Fourty-six percent of the final energy consumed in the UK is used to provide heat, of which 80% is heat for buildings.

“Having worked on Pathways for Heat it became apparent that for buildings to achieve low-carbon status, the heat being provided needed to come from renewable or low-carbon sources.

“There are real business opportunities for renewable and low-carbon heating technologies to grow, but the government needs to provide the long-term policy certainty necessary for the industry to flourish.”

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