Heat networks account for only a small proportion of UK heating systems. As a result, their locations were unrecorded and their operation was unregulated until 2014.
The purpose of the Heat Network (Metering and Billing) Regulations (‘the Regulations’), which came into force initially in 2014, is to drive energy efficiency and reduce carbon emissions from heating. The energy efficiency is achieved through the installation of metering devices and billing based on consumption, which will decrease the use of energy and reduce consumer bills, and result in associated carbon emission savings. Metering also supports fair and transparent billing for customers on heat networks. In addition, the Regulations have led to the creation of the first database of UK heat networks.
Under the Regulations, the operators of heat networks must submit notifications for the heat networks they operate. They must, where required, install metering devices on those networks.
Operators whose networks are fitted with metering devices must meet ongoing obligations including using these devices to bill customers based on their consumption of heating, cooling or hot water.
The Regulations were subsequently amended in 2015, and most recently, in November 2020. The links to Regulations and amendments are available at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/heat-networks
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