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Weekly column by EUA's Chief Executive Mike Foster

Last Monday saw the launch of the Carbon Connect report into the future of heating in the UK. EUA have supported the work involved in producing the report, partly in response to DECC choosing not to produce a 2014 Heat Strategy themselves. The report, the first stage, examined the evidence that currently is used to inform debate on this important topic. It also helped to highlight the gaps in knowledge that currently exist.  

At the launch event I spoke alongside David Wagstaff from DECC, Chris Clarke from IGEM, Lord Jenkin and Alan Whitehead MP. I raised a couple of issues that readers of this column would be familiar with.  

I made the public offer to DECC that EUA and its divisions would do its utmost to act as the link between the installers (often ignored in the past) and policy makers. Any heat strategy without their input is likely to fail.  

I also challenged the premise, first highlighted in 2010, of an all-electric heating scenario which by definition means the end of the gas distribution network. There are numerous reasons why this outlook is flawed, and thankfully DECC seem to recognise this. The Carbon Connect report points this out well, by reminding us that at the same time DECC are advocating all electric heating they want all gas cooking! You couldn't make it up. But the serious point is that the future of the gas grid requires a proper public debate, at the moment that isn't taking place and it needs to.

Best wishes, 

Mike Foster CE

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