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Trade association encourage households to transition to Biofuels

By Rachael Glennie

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Trade association UK and Ireland Fuel Distributors Association (UKIFDA), has launched a campaign advising 135,000 households across Scotland who use oil heating about a plan to decarbonise using biofuels.

Guy Pulham, Chief Executive of UKIFDA
Guy Pulham, Chief Executive of UKIFDA

UKIFDA is working with trade associations within the liquid fuels supply chain to lobby the UK Government to develop a transition that enables consumers not connected to the gas grid to cut their carbon emissions through a series of planned steps rather than one major heating system change.

Biofuels would allow off-grid homes to switch to a more environmentally friendly fuel with lower carbon emissions straightaway, with a view to fully transition over time.

Importantly though, there will be minimum disruption to households as they can continue to use a liquid fuel form of heating without making large scale changes to their home heating.

UKIFDA chief executive, Guy Pulham, commented: "Transitioning to biofuels is key in reaching the both the UK Government's decarbonisation targets, and in a way that works for consumers too.

"We are also keen to stress that oil boilers are not banned in existing homes and Government has not announced any plans to do this.

"If consumers want to change their existing oil boiler for a new oil boiler they can still do so.

"We recommend switching to a condensing boiler for greater energy efficiency and in preparation for transitioning to biofuel in time.

"Highly efficient, oil-fired condensing heating systems provide an excellent way to begin contributing to the energy transition, as modern equipment consumes virtually all the fuel used.

" Compared to outdated, standard boilers, they save up to 25 per cent of the fuel oil - which also means a 25 per cent reduction in your carbon emissions.

"Typically, a new condensing oil-fired boiler will have an efficiency of 92 per cent to 93 per cent and there are now over 90 'A' rated models on the market.

"We have been lobbying the UK Government and the Committee on Climate Change to support our industry's strategy which presents solutions in a timeframe that exceeds the net-zero emission legislation.

He explained: "The first stage of this vision is for government to incentivise all homeowners (irrelevant of type of heating system) to make energy efficiency improvements in their own homes.

"We suggest improvements such as fitting smart meters to tanks, installing smart temperature controls across homes and installing better insulation.

"All of these improvements will increase energy efficiency, create carbon efficiency and reduce bills.

"We feel that adding biofuels into the energy mix for meeting carbon reduction targets and having a pathway to biofuels is key in reaching decarbonisation targets, and in a way that works for consumers too.

"The ultimate biofuels on the market will be zero per cent fossil.

"However, initially, the introduction of transitional fuels such as B30K mean consumers can change the fuel without changing the heating system as they would work with current oil condensing boilers and infrastructure with minimal tweaks.

"The ideal pathway to the zero fossil biofuel will take into account government ambition and consumer finances proving clear legislation to enable appropriate industry innovation to supply the new fuels."

More information, guidance and advice on transitioning to biofuels for consumers can be found on the UKIFDA website https://ukifda.org/consumers/future-liquid-fuels/."

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