In our second contribution to future Net Zero’s (FNZ) In Focus – Heat month, we discuss how large-scale deployment of biomass has the potential to provide up to 15% of the UK’s primary energy demand by 2050.
The greatest contributor to UK greenhouse gas emissions is heat at 37%. In light of this, the renewable heat industry has seen significant investment and growth over the last few years in both the public and private sectors.
This investment is targeted in urban areas where new housing developments benefit from energy efficiency measures such as heat pumps and modern insulation. In rural areas of the UK, biomass boilers are often a viable and suitable low carbon alternative to traditional gas or oil-fired boilers. The role of biomass is significant in the UK’s transition towards net zero, as many rural properties cannot access gas networks; employ old heating systems; and are often energy inefficient with poor insulation. Biomass boilers are suitable for older homes and tend to be easier to retrofit to the existing heating system than other low-carbon technologies. With around 22 million homes using gas boilers in 2020, small domestic biomass boilers can continue to play a role in reducing carbon emissions and contributing to the UK’s 2050 net zero target.
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