Bess Hulme from DECC explained her role in the government department which is looking at how to lower the barriers to wider deployment of water source heat pumps across the UK. Hulme shared the fact that only 2% of heat demand is currently delivered via heat networks in Britain. This is delivered by 2,000 heat networks.
Much of what the government is doing, explained Hugh Muschamp from the Scottish office of DECC, is to provide information to the market via heat maps which reveal where demand for heat is across the nation and from where it can be sourced. The heat map can be found here: http://heatmap.scotland.gov.uk/
The availability of finance was a key topic within the seminar, illustrated by the £3.8 Bn available from the Green Investment Bank to invest in captial projects in the UK. Furthermore, Alan Crooks from Resource Efficient Scotland spoke about the number of unsecured loans available for district heating and domestic heating projects which included up to £400,000 per project for heat network projects, and up to £5m per project from the 'Warm Homes Fund'.
Managing Director of the Drammen District Heating Company, was presented with an award for the 'Public Sector Project of the Year' from the National Heat Pumps Awards to recognise the valuable contribution this project has made to the possibilities provided by large scale heat pumps for heating homes and business. The award was presented by Heat Pumps Today editor, Will Hawkins.
The event was organised by Star Renewable Energy, the firm that designed and implemented the Drammen district heating heat pump plant in Norway recently, with the help and support of Scottish Renewables and Scottish Enterprise.
Speaker slides from the seminar are now available online here.
For anyone interested in furthering their knowledge of heat networks and low carbon heat, there is the Low Carbon Heat International Showcase on 18 & 19 November in Edinburgh. Find more details here.