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Published February 3, 2021
The UK could see dramatic growth in the use of electric heat pumps and electric vehicles over the next years, a report has predicted.
The use of domestic heat pumps could rise by 2,500% by 2030, according to research published by UK Power Networks. Meanwhile electric vehicle use could increase by more than 3,000% in the same period.
The figures mean there could be more than 700,000 electric heat pumps across London, the East, and South East by 2030, and up to 4.5 million EVs on British roads.
If realised, this scenario would put the UK on track to reach its net zero carbon emissions by 2050.
The prediction is published in UK Power Networks’ 2021 Distribution Future Energy Scenarios. The research maps four different scenarios up to 2050.
The report sees sales of EVs accelerating as a result of falling EV prices coupled with the government’s ban on sales of new petrol and diesel cars in 2030.
In the most optimistic scenario, the UK reaches net zero carbon emissions as early as 2048 and Brits install 1.2 million electric heat pumps and switch to public transport, leading to 4.2 million fewer cars on the roads than the other scenarios.
In another scenario, UK households install a quarter of a million solar panels, aggregate grid scale battery storage capacity grows to more than double that of the UK’s largest nuclear power station, and the work begins to put in place a hydrogen gas grid.
Nick Fedson, sustainability analyst for Alfa Energy, said: “It’s good to see such optimistic predictions for heat pumps because decarbonising heat is currently a slow-moving policy area for the UK government as it moves towards 2050. Decarbonising heat is less straightforward to legislate as it is for power generation. You can introduce green energy at source or replace methane with hydrogen, but mandating homeowners to install new equipment on their properties is much more challenging, from a political point of view. However, it is hugely important: we won’t