Rural households are being blocked from making net zero upgrades to their homes

The Telegraph reports households are being blocked from making net zero upgrades to their homes due to lack of electricity supply, the energy watchdog has warned

Residents of rural villages have been told by network operators there is not enough grid capacity to support electric upgrades, despite government plans which will require homes to install heat pumps and electric car charge points. 

The Government wants 600,000 heat pumps to be installed every year from 2028, while an estimated eight million electric vehicles (EVs) will be registered by 2030. This comes on top of a planned ban on heating oil from 2026. 

Roughly four million households in Britain are not connected to the gas grid and will have to switch to electric heating as part of the Government’s net zero drive.

But outdated infrastructure, which has led to weak spots in the national energy grid, have prompted fears rural communities and even entire villages, which mostly rely on heating oil, will be “left behind”. 

Ofgem, the regulator, said on that the expansion of supply into rural areas was “a massive project over the next decade” as the industry frantically tries to remove bottlenecks and accelerate grid connections.

A spokesman said:

“The big policy promises are empty words if communities can’t get connected to the grid wherever they live and when they need it – especially in the countryside.”

A source at the regulator added:

“The current electricity grid has not got the capacity. The problem is easier to diagnose than the solution: to date, there is no financial incentive for the energy distributors to invest in rural grids.”

Sources at the Department for Energy and Net Zero said the Government was working closely with the network operators and Ofgem "to transform the network at the scale and pace needed". 

Campaigners have warned that until improvements are made to local supply, rural households hoping to make green adjustments to their homes risk being told by their network operator that it is not possible.

Sarah Lee, of the Countryside Alliance, said:

“We are concerned the rural network will not cope with demand and the Government’s ambitions for this roll-out of technology.

“I am aware of the Government looking at it but I fear, a bit like the broadband rollout, the ambitions will not match capacity in the network and once again rural areas will be left behind.”

Full article:

The Telegrapgh - The village where net zero won’t work – and why it’s not alone
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The Countryside Alliance is a member of the Rural Services Network.  You can find out more about them at this link. 


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