HOT|COOL NO.1/2021 - "Fuel, Flexibility & Green Transition"

The Danish role in supporting Scottish ambitions within district heating dates back to 2014. In 2017, this cooperation was formalized as government-to-government cooperation on energy policy established at the Danish Embassy in London and the Danish Energy Agency. The Energy Governance Partnership (EGP), as this program is formally called, engages with other ambitious governments around the world on key climate policy areas. In this case, EGP ensures that lessons learned around regulation and development of district heating are made readily available for national and local policymakers. In the case of supporting the Scottish Bill process, the EGP provided inspiration and evidence from the Danish case through study tours, workshops, participation in working groups, written evidence, and a long-standing close dialogue with the Scottish teambehind the Bill. COVID19, unfortunately, meant that the Scottish parliamentary committee had to cancel a planned study to Denmark to give inspiration on Danish district heating systems. Instead, the committee was provided with written evidence, for which many of the committee members expressed their appreciation. The cooperation is run from the Danish Embassy in London in close cooperation between the Danish Energy Agency (Ministry of Climate, Energy & Utilities) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Drawing on a team of policy experts at the Embassy and the Energy Agency, the program delivers inspiration and advice on a range of technical and legislative topics within district heating and energy efficiency in buildings.

But though much is still to come, the new Bill is widely celebrated by stakeholders and industry as a crucial element of increasing investor confidence in the sector. As an example, the Association for Decentralised Energy in the UK welcomed the Bill, saying: "The Heat Networks (Scotland) Bill sets an ambitious precedent for the rest of the UK, and for the future of low carbon heat. […]. While delivering clean energy to thousands of homes across the country, this legislation will also increase decentralized energy systems' confidence, creating jobs and economic growth. […]"


• a Licensing system to ensure that those developing and operating the infrastructure are suitable to do so – as well as new rights and powers that alleviate challenges for the license holders • a Consent system to ensure that local factors and assets are considered before approving new developments • a nation-wide identification of suitable Heat Network Zones requiring close coordination between national and local authorities. Government is furthermore obliged to guide and find sufficient funding for local authorities • enabling the award of long-term but time-limited Heat Network Zone Permits – an exclusive right given to a single organisation to operate a heat network within a the given Heat Network Zone • introducing Transfer Schemes to provide a ‘Supplier of Last Resort’ and a means to fairly re- tender Heat Network Zone Permits • a Heat Networks Delivery Plan and Heat Network Supply Targets that on a continuous basis tasks the Government with monitoring and reacting to the Bill and subsequent policies' ability to meet set targets

“Scottish climate policy ambitions are amongst the highest in the world. The aim is to reach 75 % reductions in climate emissions by 2030”

Danish inspiration and support emphasised during parliamentary debates

Danish experiences and support played a significant role in the policy process surrounding the Heat Networks (Scotland) Bill. The results achieved by the Danish approach to planning and regulating for district heating were often quoted as an inspiration for the Bill and various amendments discussed during debates. Before the final vote, The Minister for Energy, Connectivity and the Islands, Paul Wheelhouse, also thanked the Danish Government for its support in giving the Scottish Government the benefit of its experience .

For further information please contact: Jacob Byskov Kristensen,

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