Smart and Flexible Electric Heat
Heating in residential, commercial and industrial settings makes up almost half of final energy consumption in the UK, more than the energy consumed for electricity or transport. The electrification of heat is anticipated to play a major role for the UK’s efforts to reduce emissions to net-zero by 2050.
Heating demand is highly variable between seasons and time of day. To take maximum advantage of low-carbon generation, and to respect the limitations of the distribution grid, electricity loads for heating will need to be flexible.
This Briefing Paper explores the potential for smart flexible low-carbon electric heating in UK homes and the challenges for consumer engagement. This paper considers four key elements for enabling smart, flexible and cost-effective electric heating in UK homes: low-carbon heating systems; cost-reflective electricity pricing; thermally efficient buildings; and smart storage devices.