The UK requires an independent impartial body to lead the heat decarbonisation strategy, according to a high-level commission convened by the CBI and University of Birmingham.

The new Heat Commission published a series of recommendations for decarbonising heat as part of the nation’s strategy to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

The report stresses the importance for communities, government and regulators to work together to decarbonise the heat sector – currently the largest source of UK carbon emissions, accounting for more than a third of greenhouse gasses.

The industry group recommended a ban on conventional gas boilers by 2035, with low-carbon technologies such as heat networks and heat pumps being installed instead.

Domestic heat is undoubtedly the biggest challenge facing the country as we tackle the escalating climate crisis. Currently only 1 million out of 27 million UK homes have access to low-carbon heat.

 

Karan Bilimoria, CBI President and chair of the Heat Commission, said:

“A green recovery and progress towards the UK’s net zero emission target are doomed to fail if we don’t address the urgent need to decarbonise the heat in our homes and buildings.

 

Recent government announcements will undoubtedly fast-forward our transition towards net zero. The commission’s recommendations offer a roadmap to accelerate progress, ensure our nation stays on a path to sustainable recovery and ensures the UK remains a global leader in meeting climate commitments.

 

Aside from the moral imperative, there’s also a strong economic case for protecting our planet. Large-scale heat decarbonisation and energy efficiency would provide a huge jobs boost for the economy at a time when new career opportunities are needed more than ever.”

 

Chris Stark, Chief Executive of the Committee on Climate Change, said:

“Heat is going to move to centre stage in the years to come, so we really need to welcome this CBI report, which gives us a sense of what a net zero compatible package of measures might look like.”