This paper proposes that whilst the exact pathway to decarbonising heat in the UK is not yet clear, there are a range of actions that could be taken in the next ten years to shift heat onto the right route to meet our 2050 net zero obligation. We already possess many of the skills and technologies required, but there are a number of significant barriers preventing a spontaneous movement towards low carbon heat on the scale required – a starting impulse is needed.
Energy efficiency and low carbon heating have the potential to radically improve the quality of life of not just the poorest in our society but all residents of the United Kingdom. With the right approach, the decarbonisation of heat can improve health outcomes for millions, create new jobs in manufacturing and construction, reduce air pollution in our cities and reduce the burden on our health service. This, in addition to leading the world in mitigating the climate emergency.
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