What is Heat?

Renewable heat refers to the renewable generation of heat rather than electricity. Heat is required for hot water and cooking, to heat and cool buildings and in the manufacturing industries. There are a range of technologies and sources available to generate renewable heat, including heat pumps (air, water and ground), solar thermal panels, energy from waste, anaerobic digestion and biomass. Renewable heat installations can be a range of sizes and cater for single homes, businesses or industrial activities. They can also serve multiple users through a heat network, much like a gas or electricity network.

Why is Heat Important?

Heating in Scotland currently represents over 50% of total energy used, produces 47% of Scotland’s CO2 emissions and accounts for 60% of domestic energy costs. At present, very little of our heat is generated from renewable sources and therefore it is an economic, social and environmental imperative that we encourage different forms of renewable energy technologies to provide clean, sustainable and affordable heat to Scotland’s homes and businesses.

Although we have a target of 11% of all heat in Scotland to come from renewable sources by 2020 we are currently at 4.1%. Only by increasing the deployment of renewable heating will we be able to meet our renewable energy and climate change targets.

What is SR doing?

Scottish Renewables works with our members to encourage the development of the heat sector in Scotland.

We also work with the Scottish and UK Governments, their enterprise agencies, and other relevant organisations to secure the regulatory and policy landscape that will enable renewable heat to play an increasing role in Scotland’s energy mix.

Much of our work is directed by Scottish Renewables’ heat work group. For more information on the group please contact Stephanie Clark.

SR recent achievements in the Heat sector

  • Change of policy to allow Registered Providers of Social Housing access to the domestic Renewable Heat Incentive
  • Scotland’s Energy Minister Fergus Ewing delivered keynote address at our Heat & Bioenergy Conference in June.
  • SR prepared a Heat Key Asks document which highlights the industry’s main concerns for the sector, and will feed into Scottish Government’s Heat Generation Policy Statement.
  • SG is developing a Heat Generation Policy Statement to set out future supply scenarios, which SR will help inform.
  • Submitted oral and written evidence to the Economy, Energy & Tourism Committee’s Draft Budget 2014-15, calling for the Scottish Government’s National Indicators to include one on generating more heat from renewables.
  • Prepared a briefing paper for DECC to highlight our concerns regarding the impact of CfDs on CHP projects. Contributed to consultations on the impacts of EMR for CHP schemes.

Meet The Team


Stephanie Clark is our Policy Manager for Onshore Renewables. Her remit includes heat, bioenergy, micro-renewables, local development plans and business rates.

E: sclark@scottishrenewables.com
T: 0141 353 4002