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Heat Networks Investment Project

Heat networks deliver heat to multiple properties from a single central heat source, a more efficient heating system which can deliver cost effective carbon savings and reduce consumer heating costs. The Heat Networks Investment Project (HNIP) aims to provide £320m of capital support to drive an increase in the number of heat networks being built. 

Objectives of the consultation

HNIP will run for five years and will help create the conditions necessary for a self-sustaining heat network market to develop and deliver carbon savings for carbon budgets.

The Government sought views from current and potential heat network sponsors, investors, supply chain, and any other stakeholders on how best to use the capital support funding to overcome barriers to investment in heat networks and increase heat network deployment rates. The Government also invited views on the organisations and types of schemes that should be eligible for investment support, what form this funding should take, and the criteria that should be used to assess applications for funding.

As part of the consultation, the Government run two all day stakeholder events in London and Newcastle to collect views on the scope and design of HNIP, as well as provide the opportunity to hear about the project development guidance under development by the Heat Networks Delivery Unit.

The consultation closed on 3 August 2016.

Supporting papers

To download the documents that supported this consultation, please follow the links below.

CIBSE response

The Institution supports the proposed Heat Networks Investment Project. Heat Networks are long term infrastructure projects and require long term policy stability. The proposed investment helps to provide a clear signal to the public sector and also to demonstrate a clear commitment to potential private sector investors in district heating systems.

The 2016 Progress Report published by the Committee for Climate Change, whilst acknowledging the contribution made by the Heat Networks Investment Project to the delivery of low carbon heat, also calls for further investment and policy measures in this field. The report highlights the important role of heat networks in contributing to carbon abatement. For these reasons CIBSE considers that the Heat Networks Investment Project is a particularly important initiative, which the institution wholeheartedly supports.

The Report continues to note the paucity of data on heat network deployment. It is therefore essential that the Heat Networks Investment Project (HNIP) is implemented in such a way that monitoring and reporting on the outcomes of projects is a mandatory activity, and that public taxpayer funding is absolutely conditional on full monitoring and reporting of supported networks.

Ideally the data collected would be made publicly available on the web to provide feedback and to demonstrate the achievements being made in the sector. This would go some way to implementing the Committee for Climate Change call for greater data collection and reporting.

To read the full CIBSE response, please follow the link below.

Results of the consultation and next steps

The Government published its response to the consultation on the Heat Networks Investment Projecton on 17 October 2016. The document summarises the responses received from a wide variety of interested stakeholders, on how best to use the capital support funding to overcome barriers to investment in heat networks and achieve the aims of the project. It also presents the characteristics of the support which is going to be provided by the Project as part of its first phase which will be delivered as a pilot. To read the Government response please follow the link below.