The Prime Minister recently outlined his approach to achieving net zero in a landmark speech. The government must now follow through with its promise to put fairness and choice at the heart of its plans for off-grid homes, which includes the option of switching to a renewable liquid fuel.
Here’s what’s next for our campaign…
The Prime Minister’s announcements included:
- Existing proposals to ban the installation of domestic oil boilers in off-grid homes will be moved from 2026 to 2035
- There will be an exemption to the phasing out of fossil fuel boilers, including gas, in 2035 to ensure households who will most struggle to make the switch to heat pumps, or other low-carbon alternatives, won’t have to do so. This is expected to cover about a fifth of homes, including those off the gas grid
- The UK’s target to achieve net zero emissions by 2050 remains in place.
The government has since clarified that they will explore potential low carbon heating options for off-gas grid properties that are not suitable for heat pumps by issuing a consultation.
Off-grid households must have a choice
We are pleased that the government has recognised its existing proposal to ban the installation of fossil fuel boilers from 2026, and forcing properties to switch to a heat pump, unfairly targeted off-grid households. These older properties are often unsuited to heat pumps without extensive additional work, such as new radiators, new piping, the introduction of a hot water tank, and additional insulation. As a result, they would have faced some of the highest costs and poorest outcomes.
If off-grid households don’t have a choice in the low carbon technologies they install, then the UK’s ambition to reduce our carbon emissions will stall. We fully support the drive to greener heating and it’s vital we do not lose momentum. That’s why it’s important the government explores all the options on the table…
Delivering a consultation on renewable liquid fuels
Our demonstration project in just under 150 properties has proved that a renewable liquid fuel called Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO) provides a pragmatic and straight forward solution for oil heating homes. The fuel reduces emissions by 88% and boilers can be converted in just a few hours for around £500. We are pleased with the support we’ve received from rural MPs for this approach.
As a result, the government put forward an amendment to its Energy Bill which committed it to delivering a consultation on the use of renewable liquid fuels within 12 months of the Bill receiving Royal Ascent.
It’s vital the government now brings forward this consultation as quickly as possible and supports a fuel obligation to reduce the cost of HVO so it can be deployed more widely to the UK’s 1.7 million homes.
In the meantime, keep an eye out for more updates from Future Ready Fuel on how you can support our campaign.