How can businesses come together to convert the UK’s worst energy offenders: oil heaters

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The UK has reduced its greenhouse gas emissions significantly in recent years, but there is still a lot to be done. About 31% of total CO2 emissions come from our homes. These shocking statistics should be enough to encourage homeowners and energy consumers to save and switch to cleaner, renewable energy sources.

In the UK, 4% of households still depend on oil to heat their homes. This may seem relatively insignificant, but with the 1.1 million households that contribute significantly to air pollution, we can’t turn a blind eye.

Keith Bastian, CEO of renewable energy company Outfox the Market and electrical home heating company Fischer Future Heat, explains the harmful effects of oil spills and how companies can join forces to convert the UK’s worst energy offenders.

In the UK, those who rely on oil for energy are a minority, but this is still a relatively high number of households contributing to air pollution.

And while new buildings continue to fill gaps in land across the country and incorporate cleaner, more sustainable methods of home energy, many people and homeowners are looking for older, traditional homes with lots of character.

Currently there appears to be an increasing preference for Victorian, Edwardian and Georgian apartments in the housing market. In fact, according to a study, 82% of Britons would prefer an old property to a new one. While these homes have a pleasing design aesthetic, they can come with incredibly outdated heating systems. Typically these homes have oil heating, which is incredibly harmful to the environment, with oil remaining one of the top three pollutants in the UK.

Oil pollution: effects on the environment and our health

Fossil fuels like coal and gas and their negative effects on the environment get a lot of airtime, but we don’t hear much about the effects of oil, even though it’s also a fossil fuel.

Just because it’s used less frequently in households doesn’t mean it’s less harmful. In fact, oil can pollute streams, rivers, and even groundwater. Toxic and noxious oil spills can affect both the UK’s drinking water supply and the environment.

But what more can be done to change the consensus and help owners make a cleaner energy transition when homes currently being built are currently outside of the regulations for moving to newer, more renewable heating systems?

Help the rural areas make the switch

Rural areas in the UK have been found to have the highest proportions of oil-heated houses. There are towns and villages across the UK that are almost entirely dependent on oil as an energy source. A large proportion of oil-fired homes have typically been identified in rural areas in Scotland, east England and the south west.

But it depends on the infrastructure and whether an area has the ability to make such changes.

Those in power have to set the wheels in motion so that cities and villages can use renewable energy sources. If they’re not there, how can we expect homeowners to make such drastic changes without the support of those who are able to change something?

Rooted attitudes and aesthetic and lifestyle choices can be difficult to change, but there are options. With the right support from energy providers, institutions and local organizations, homeowners get a lot of popularity. Some examples of changes that can make a difference are:

• Connection to the gas network • Liquid gas boiler • Air heat pump • Geothermal heat pump • Biomass boiler • Electric heating

I encourage that now is the time for a unique focus on converting the UK’s worst energy sinners.

We need to work together to tackle climate change and air pollution, and with government support, tackling infrastructure and attitudes, this will be easier than ever.

This was published by Fischer Future Heat in the member news section of Bdaily.

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