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Green boiler pilot to accelerate low-carbon heat in social housing launches

SGN

2 min read Partner content

We’ve co-launched a pilot scheme aimed at simultaneously cutting bills and carbon emissions for people unable to afford the switch to clean heating.

Alongside UK Power Networks, Stonewater, Social Energy and Passiv UK, we’ll be installing new hybrid boilers – which use both gas and electricity – plus solar panels and batteries in 25 South East homes, to create a template for green heating in social housing to ensure no one is left behind in the net zero transition.

With 3.9 million people living in social housing in the UK, and homes accounting for 15% of the nation’s total greenhouse gas emissions, the Right to Heat project aims to tackle the costs of switching to low-carbon technology.

The compact hybrid heating systems work by using smart controls that can automatically switch between gas and electricity to counter several factors including fluctuating energy costs. Residents will use less natural gas as a result of the system. In addition, the solar panels will provide renewable energy and the batteries can store excess power for periods of increased demand. This flexibility will save residents money and reduce household emissions at the same time.

Our Regional Development Manager Dave Raymond said: “What makes this exciting project so unique is the exceptional collaboration from all the partners involved, as well as its focus on those in society who otherwise would have difficulty in keeping up with net zero.”

Adam Masters, Environmental Sustainability Manager at Stonewater, commented: “We understand the importance of everyone having a warm, comfortable and affordable place that they can call home. Our involvement with Right to Heat will enable more of our customers, but also residents of other housing providers, to reap the environmental and cost benefits of low-carbon heating – sooner rather than later.”

Ian Cameron, Head of Customer Services and Innovation at UK Power Networks, added: “Right to Heat is about creating a scalable template for social housing so no one is left behind in tackling the climate crisis. We’re determined to make the transition work for all of customers, no matter their circumstances.”

The pilot runs until March 2023 and follows UK Power Networks’ HyCompact project, which is testing hybrid heating systems in seven homes across Wales and London.

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