New renewable fuel offers green future for oil heated households

23rd June 2021

A simple solution to greener heating could be on the way for oil heated households following the early success of trials across the UK of a new renewable liquid fuel alternative to kerosene.

The new fuel, called Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO), is made from fossil free, certified sustainable waste materials sourced without harming the environment and reduces emissions by almost 90%.

Initially, 19 properties across the UK have successfully adopted HVO and there are plans to expand the trials further over the coming months.

The properties have switched to the new fuel following simple, relatively inexpensive modifications to existing oil heating systems.

The trial initiative has been launched by heating industry trade associations OFTEC and UKIFDA as the government ramps up its commitment to achieving net zero emissions by 2050.

Malcolm Farrow from OFTEC comments: “The initial trial results are highly encouraging and add further evidence to show that HVO offers oil heated households an attractive, low cost, practical option for reducing carbon emissions.

“Converting properties to fossil-free HVO is a simple process that costs around £500 compared to the thousands of pounds it currently costs to install a completely new low carbon heating system, plus the additional improvements that would need to be made to many older, poorly insulated homes.

“Simply switching to a new greener fuel would also be far more effective in situations where a boiler breaks down and needs changing quickly to get the heating back on, ensuring households are not left in cold properties for long periods.”

Following the promising trial results to date, OFTEC and UKIFDA have provided a much needed source of information for oil heated households to help them understand the green heating options available to them. The new website can be found at www.futurereadyfuel.info

Ken Cronin, CEO of the UK and Ireland Fuel Distributors Association (UKIFDA) added: “The early trial results indicate that HVO can offer the all-important choice that has been lacking when it comes to low carbon heating solutions for our customers.

“We are confident oil heated households will be keen to accept an HVO solution as it overcomes the major cost of change and disruption barriers to decarbonisation that exist for so many people living in older, hard to treat homes.”

Industry hopes to begin introducing the new fuel in 2022, subject to the completion of successful trials and obtaining government approval to use HVO as a heating fuel.

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