The research, by Dr Richard Lowes and Dr Bridget Woodman from the University of Exeter’s Energy Policy Group, found that those with existing interests around fossil fuel heat were overselling the idea of converting the UK’s existing gas infrastructure to run on low carbon gases such as hydrogen. This overselling comes at the expense of known, low- carbon heating options. The research is published in the international peer reviewed journal Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions and the project formed part of the UK Energy Research Centre. In order to reach goals for net-zero emissions for heating, which makes up around a fifth of UK emissions, huge changes are required to the way that homes and buildings are heated. The deployment of energy efficiency measures and a move from oil and fossil gas towards the use of heat pumps and heat networks which rely on low carbon electricity has been seen as vital. The promotion of hydrogen was often in the form of political lobbying and through the production of industry funded reports and research and has been taking place at the same time that the idea of using hydrogen for heat has rapidly risen up the policy agenda.
Exeter University 19th Aug 2020 read more »