Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 2°C

min temp: 1°C

Search

Rural homes in Suffolk could be heated by vegetable oil within five years, says industry report

PUBLISHED: 20:26 24 October 2017 | UPDATED: 20:26 24 October 2017

Malcolm Farrow from Oftec. Picture: GENESIS PR

Malcolm Farrow from Oftec. Picture: GENESIS PR

Archant

More than 34,000 homes in Suffolk could be heated by vegetable oil within the next five years, according to a new report by industry experts.

Oil heating is currently one of the most popular choices for people living off the gas grid in the county, but a new report suggests a switch to a renewable alternative, such as a vegetable oil blend, could happen as early as 2022.

The report by Oftec, the trade association for the oil and heating industry, says the ‘biofuel’ could play an important role in reducing carbon emissions as well as providing a sustainable solution for rural heating across Suffolk.

Malcolm Farrow, from Oftec, said: “Oil heating is incredibly popular in Suffolk due to its low price and flexibility.

“But we are all being encouraged to take steps to reduce our carbon emissions and, although it may sound strange, vegetable oil could be the key.

“Switching oil using homes to a biofuel, which blends a small amount of kerosene with vegetable oil or an oil derived from waste products, represents the best of both worlds.

“Households could continue to enjoy the benefits of a liquid fuel, such as topping up when they want and shopping around for the best price, while also drastically cutting their carbon emissions.

“For households, adopting this biofuel would be relatively simple as the fuel can be stored in existing oil tanks and would only require a minor boiler adjustment which could be completed during an annual standard service.”

Other renewable heating technologies currently available for rural homes, such as air source heat pumps and solar thermal, have seen limited take-up due to high upfront installation costs, as well as the significant disruption involved, according to Oftec.

Mr Farrow said: “We are going through a period of significant change in the way we consume energy, from the move towards electric cars for transport to renewable sources of heating.

“However, when it comes to keeping warm, homes in Suffolk only have the option of expensive and impractical renewable technologies at the moment.

“Biofuels could represent a viable option to help rural homes reduce carbon emissions. We have presented detailed proposals to local MPs and government and will shortly begin real world testing.”

A yellow weather warning for snow has been issued for much of the Eastern region, including Suffolk and Essex, next week.

Highways England is set to answer some key questions on Orwell Bridge closures next week, as bosses address councillors in Ipswich on the latest measures.

Rail commuters on the region’s mainline this morning are likely to face disruption after the over-running engineering works closed the line between Stratford and Liverpool Street.

Suffolk church leaders have been left confused and irritated by the repeated vandalism of their visitor book.

Talented students at Suffolk New College organised and filmed their own Jools Holland-style show showcasing some of Suffolk’s brightest talent.

Remarkable staff and volunteers at Ipswich Hospital who go the extra mile were recognised at the trust’s annual awards ceremony.

Suffolk looks set for snow showers for much of next week, as latest forecasts suggest that Tuesday-Saturday is when the flurries will fall.

ActivLives is launching free drop-in gardening sessions for older people in the community and their relatives or carers next month.

Mountain Warehouse in Cornhill has partnered up with Keep Britain Tidy for its Great British Spring Clean 2018.

Therese Coffey repeated concerns over the ability of UK’s largest multi-academy trust to turn around the failing Felixstowe Academy.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24