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Heat Network Zoning Pilot

Heat Network Zoning Pilot

Heating homes and businesses has hit the headlines over the last few months, with prices for gas and electricity skyrocketing, impacting the most vulnerable in our society and causing pain for businesses just as they began to recover from Covid impacts.

Although there are a range of fixes being rolled out to lessen the impact in the short-term, from a strategic level, the decarbonisation of heat provides us with a long-term opportunity to decouple the provision of warm homes from global oil and gas markets. This is a key strand of the York & North Yorkshire Routemap to Carbon Negative, which aims for a range of low carbon technologies to be deployed based on the most cost-effective option for each locality, such as heat pumps, hydrogen and heat networks.

In January 2022, the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) kicked off a pilot programme of Heat Network Zoning, which will geographically designate and then legislate for the rollout of low-cost, low-carbon heat networks that supply heat for a number of buildings. Northallerton is one of the 28 pilot towns and cities, and Y&NY LEP has been working closely with North Yorkshire County Council and Hambleton District Council to test the methodology. The pilot will be focused on the town itself, and will run throughout 2022.

The pilot consists of modelling that matches heat availability with heat demand, using available data on where heat is currently an unutilised or waste product (e.g. from water courses, industrial processes, geothermal strata or large energy users), and where heat is needed (e.g. homes and businesses, large heat users such as swimming pools and hospitals). As well as using public data, we’re keen to incorporate data direct from Northallerton’s businesses and large property owners.

If you would like to contribute to the project, please email Katie Privett at and use the subject line ‘HNZ Northallerton’.

By being part of the pilot, public bodies and participating businesses in Northallerton will benefit from an understanding of the likely lowest cost route to low-carbon heat for their buildings, early insight into the heat network zoning process, and the opportunity to shape the delivery of a future heat network in your town.