The Wales Heat Strategy proposes electrification and heat pumps as the ‘core solution’ to transitioning Welsh homes onto low carbon heating. This will have a significant impact on the 130,000 properties in Wales which rely on oil to heat their homes.
For some properties, switching to a heat pump is an ideal solution and we fully support the use of the technology where it makes sense.
However, many properties are simply not suited to heat pumps and will require disruptive and costly changes for them to work effectively. This is particularly true in Wales where the housing stock is typically much older.
These changes can include new radiators, better insulation, new piping and the reintroduction of the hot water tank. The total cost can be over £20k which simply isn’t affordable or practical.
The Wales Heat Strategy consultation recognises this challenge, stating:
That’s why we’re campaigning for homes in Wales and across the UK to instead have the choice of switching to a renewable liquid fuel called Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO).
The fuel works in an existing oil heating system following a minor modification to the boiler. This is expected to cost around £500 and can be completed in a few hours. As a result, emissions are reduced by nearly 90%.
We believe this is a practical and realistic alternative solution for harder to treat properties. Fundamentally, it’s about giving households a choice so they can decide whether a heat pump or renewable liquid fuel is the best solution for them.
The UK government put forward similar proposals for oil heated homes to switch to heat pumps. However, pressure from rural MPs in Westminster led to a change in policy with the government now promising to publish a consultation on renewable liquid fuels within the next year.
The UK’s legislation will impact Wales, but the devolved Welsh government’s Heat Strategy could lead to a different approach and a greater focus on heat pumps.
Make your voice heard and respond to the consultation.
Around 150 oil heated properties across the UK from homes, pubs, schools to churches have been using the renewable liquid fuel Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO) for the past two years as part of our demonstration project.
It’s been a huge success! The switch from kerosene to HVO required a minor modification to the boiler at an estimated cost of £500. As a result, carbon emissions were reduced by 88%. Research shows there is more than enough sustainably sourced supply to meet demand.
That’s why renewable liquid fuels, with minimal upfront cost and disruption, are the ideal alternative solution. Our project is the perfect blueprint for more rural communities to follow as part of a wider rollout.
Respond to the Wales Heat Strategy:
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