On Wednesday 5 August, the ADE hosted a webinar to launch our new paper “Zoning for Heat and Energy Efficiency” in partnership with UK Power Networks, who simultaneously launched their complimentary “Heat Street” Project.
Approaching the decarbonisation of our energy system through "zoning" for heat and energy efficiency would help bring together the fragmented mix of decisions, innovations and demonstrations that are currently commonplace across the UK, and empower local actors to introduce low carbon energy solutions that work for their area.
The event discussed how the principle of zoning could help to lay out a framework for a net zero energy system and featured speakers from across the sector, each with their own take on how zoning could help to empower local authorities and consumers.
The webinar was chaired by Sheryl French, Project Director - Mobilising Local Energy Investment for Cambridgeshire County Council, who opened by laying out some of the problems faced currently by local authorities when considering decarbonisation at a constituency and regional level.
Charlotte Owen, Policy Manager at the ADE, then presented the ADE's work on zoning and launched the "Heat and Energy Efficiency Zoning: A framework for net zero for new and existing buildings" report. Charlotte discussed how zoning an area would bring with it a set of policies specifically designed to support particular solutions to come forward, through a mix of planning policies, building regulations and funding streams.
Following Charlotte, Zain Habib and Rona Mitchell of UK Power Networks presented a number of practical examples of zoning. This included UKPN's new "Heat Street" project, which will see UKPN working with local authorities and consumers within their distribution area to identify potential areas for specific low carbon heat and energy efficiency technologies.
Sheryl then introduced Polly Billington, Director of UK100, and Charlie Hartley, Trustee with the 2050 Climate Group and Scottish Just Transition Commission, who joined Charlotte, Zain and Rona for a panel discussion with audience Q&A.
The event was brought to a close by Amy Ritchie, External Affairs Officer at the ADE, who provided a wider context for how zoning fits into the ADE's wider work on the green recovery and just transition. Amy drew the audience's attention to the ADE's new green recovery landing page - www.greenrecovery.uk- which the ADE hopes will be a collaborative effort to profile green recovery events and discussions taking place in the coming months. We would encourage anyone interested to get in touch with us.
We would like to extend our thanks to all of our fantastic speakers, to UK Power Networks for their support in organising this event, and to everyone who joined us online. All resources from the event can be found below.