Boiler ban risks pushing rural residents into fuel poverty

  • 69% of households not connected to the gas grid would be unable to afford an electric heating system, new rural polling has shown
  • 58% of these households also believe Government’s 2026 boiler ban is unfair
  • A further 58% want the proposed 2026 boiler ban to be scrapped completely

Almost three-quarters of off-gas grid rural homeowners risk being pushed into fuel poverty by Government’s proposed 2026 boiler ban, with 69% of households unable to afford a new electric heating system.

New rural polling*, on behalf of trade association Liquid Gas UK, also shows 58% of homeowners not connected to the mains gas network feel the 2026 fossil fuel boiler ban is unfair compared to the much later 2035 Government ambition to phase out fossil fuels for those on the gas grid. When asked if Government should abandon the policy, almost 60% said it should.

Under plans proposed by Government, by 2026 homes currently using oil, LPG or solid-fuel heating systems would be unable to replace their heating system like-for-like should it break down. However, research shows that replacing existing systems with an electric alternative, such as a heat pump, along with necessary energy efficiency retrofitting, would cost between £15,000-£30,000 for rural homeowners.

Fuel poverty statistics released by Government last month (February 2023) showed that households in rural areas were almost 40% more likely to be in fuel poverty than their urban counterparts. The data also showed that for rural residents off the gas grid, over 20% are fuel poor compared to 12% on the gas grid.

George Webb, Liquid Gas UK CEO, says:

“Government’s current strategy risks pushing more rural households into fuel poverty. These survey results clearly indicate that an electrification-first approach to decarbonising rural homes is both unaffordable and unfair.

“Government urgently needs to re-think its 2026 boiler ban for homes not connected to the gas grid and ensure we’re offering rural communities a choice in how they decarbonise, and ultimately, heat their homes.”

“As an alternative to electric technologies, Government should consider the benefits of renewable liquid gases, which are a low-carbon and drop-in alternative to LPG, in a mixed energy approach,” he says.

“The industry is investing £600m into the domestic production of renewable liquid gases through a range of sustainable feedstocks, with a credible pathway in place to achieve net zero by 2040.

“Renewable liquid gases offer rural homeowners greater choice and reduce the risk of financial burdens in the path to decarbonisation,” he concludes. 

To find out more about renewable liquid gases, speak to your LPG supplier or visit

*Polling was carried out by Focal Data on behalf of Liquid Gas UK. 1,012 people who live in properties not connected to the gas network were surveyed between 15th and 17th February 2023. Data was weighted based on population to ensure a representative sample.


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