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Zero-In on NI-Heat Exploring Pathways Towards Heat Decarbonisation in Northern Ireland


Northern Ireland has achieved its 2020 targets in the electricity sector ahead of time with 46.8% of its electricity demand supplied by renewable generators. When it comes to heat, the progress is less impressive – 68% of domestic heating is provided by oil and only around 2,500 customers use low carbon heat generators in their homes. In addition, 22% of consumers live in fuel poverty. Fuel poverty support programmes still propose the replacement of old oil boilers with new models or with gas boilers where a connection to the grid is possible.
Failure of the commercial RHI scheme and the knock-on effect of the closure of the domestic RHI scheme caused significant damage to the industry and to the reputation of low carbon heat technologies, leaving NI consumers without any explicit supporting mechanisms for low carbon heat supply. Decreases in carbon emissions from the heat sector are mainly achieved through switching from oil to gas heating. Gas infrastructure is under development in NI and promises to reach 60% of customers by 2022.

Funding source: UK Research and Innovation, Energy Programme
Related subjects: Policy & Socio-Economics
Countries: United Kingdom

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