Fresh cash from a new £44 million government package is set to bring greener heat to homes, businesses and public buildings.
The lion’s share of the money, some £30 million, will support three heat network projects in southeast London, Manchester and Cambridgeshire.
The London Borough of Bexley has the ambition to create one of the UK’s largest heat networks to supply heat to 21,000 homes – heat for that network will be drawn from the processing of non-recyclable waste.
In Manchester, a five-kilometre zone with commercial buildings, hospitals and a mix of private and social housing will be warmed by heat powered by solar energy and air source heat pumps.
A further £14.6 million will finance 11 projects that will explore innovative low carbon technologies for heating and cooling buildings.
These include a study led by Durham University that is exploring whether the water in abandoned flooded coal mines could be used as a low carbon geothermal source of heat.
Minister for Climate Change Lord Callanan said: “Today’s funding package will accelerate the development of low carbon technologies that will both reduce emissions, and ensure people’s homes are warmer, greener and cheaper to run.
“Securing a lasting move away from fossil fuels to heat our homes will allow thousands of households and businesses to feel the benefits of projects that are breaking new ground and making our villages, towns and cities cleaner places to live and work.”
It is estimated almost a third of the UK’s total carbon dioxide emissions are coming from heating homes.