The UK Government has announced £8 million of funding for new low carbon heating projects in South Wales.
It will support the development of a new system of distribution pipes, which will take excess heat from a central source such as energy generated from waste, in Cardiff as well as a combined heat and power (CHP) plant in Bridgend.
They will then supply the heat to public buildings within the town and city centre and will be future-proofed to ensure businesses and households across South Wales can connect to the system in years to come.
By reusing heat from a local waste plant, those connected to the Cardiff network are expected to reduce their carbon emissions by up to 80%.
This could help save around 18,000 tonnes of emissions over the next 10 years – equivalent to planting 7,000 trees.
The projects are part of the UK Government’s £320 million Heat Networks Investment Project, which supports the construction of heat networks across England and Wales.
Less than 5% of energy used for heating homes and buildings comes from low carbon sources currently.
The Committee on Climate Change estimated around 18% of UK heat will need to come from heat networks by 2050 if the UK is to meet its net zero goal.
Energy and Clean Growth Minister Kwasi Kwarteng said: “These projects in Bridgend and Cardiff will help connect as many local homes and businesses as possible to low carbon affordable heating, helping people save money on energy bills.
“By connecting public buildings up to heat networks, councils and leisure centres can reinvest the money saved on energy bills into frontline services in a way that achieves our goal of reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2050.”