You are on page 1of 7

Planning and Heat

Snapshot: Heat accounted for 44% of all energy usage in 2011. Natural gas currently provides
70% of all heat
. The Energy Saving Trust annual report on the renewable heat database shows
an increase in renewable heat produced from 2.8% in 2010 to 3.8% in 2011. Projects under
construction, consented but not yet built, or in planning could potentially deliver a total output
equivalent to around 8%, well on the way towards the Scottish Governments target of deriving
11% of heat from renewable sources by 2020

Improved energy efficiency, reduced heat consumption and a progressive shift towards
renewable heat sources are required to reduce emissions. The Scottish Governments Draft
Outline Heat Vision and Draft Heat Deployment Options Guidance introduces a Heat Hierarchy
as a basis for prioritising heat management.

Planning authorities can support the transition to efficient, low carbon and renewable heat,
recognising in particular that infrastructure and co-locating supply and demand requirements
have spatial implications. So far, Highland, Fife and Perth & Kinross councils have undertaken a
Scottish Government supported heat mapping exercise. Heat mapping can focus on local need,
reduce fuel poverty, realise economic opportunity and provide strategic policy direction. An
illustrative example of a heat map is provided in the Technical Information section.

Suggested Area of Focus for Planning Authorities:

support all scales of development associated with the generation and distribution of heat and
ensure that efficiency and renewable heat potential is optimised.
participate in the development and use of heat maps to identify the potential for new and
extended networks, and develop an indicative spatial plan for heat in the development plan.
consider opportunities for renewable heat sources on brownfield sites and secure integration
of heat networks and associated energy centres within multi-functional green networks.
Strategic Development Plan Authorities:-
align visions and spatial strategies to support climate change and renewable energy and heat
targets by identifying strategic opportunities for heat efficiency and renewable heat;
align heat with other policy drivers such as climate change adaptation, delivering a low
carbon economy, reducing fuel poverty, green networks and place-making.
encourage the efficient delivery of heat in all its forms, across local authority boundaries
through use of city-region wide heat maps.

The Future of Heating: Meeting the challenge (March 2013)
Energy and Heat Hierarchy

The planning system should support a broad mix of energy generating
facilities matched to a tiered approach to heat:

1. Energy efficiency;
2. Heat from recoverable sources (particularly waste);
3. Heat from renewable and non-renewable fuel sources where greenhouse
gas emissions can be significantly reduced or the development is
consistent with the Scottish Governments Electricity Generation Policy
Statements objectives.

Local Development Plan Authorities:
use heat maps to identify site-specific opportunities for new-build or retrofit schemes to
promote energy efficiency, heat recovery and generation, heat storage, heat networks and
derive heat from renewable sources;
share heat map information with developers (e.g. at pre-application stage) and highlight
opportunities to link existing or planned heat networks or sources
highlight applications that do not address heat efficiency
secure provision for heat distribution from non-renewable sources if there is potential to
switch to renewable sources within the lifetime of the development;
take account of other policy objectives such as Designing Streets
factor heat map information into the decision-making process

Opportunities for Planning Authorities

Stage in
Possible Actions
Monitoring and
Evidence Base

Ideally, using the Scottish Government supported template, prepare a heat
map that identifies:
heat supply and demand opportunities for all settlements;
locations with high heat demand or need, such as areas of high heat density,
communities off the gas grid, fuel poor areas, and anchor heat load operators
such as hospitals and universities; and
areas of high supply, such as harvestable woodlands and sawmills for
biomass, distilleries and industrial sites generating surplus heat, deep
geothermal sources and waste streams.

Main Issues
Use the heat map to consider spatial policy options that promote energy
efficiency, heat distribution and the use of renewable heat sources.
Consider the potential to build efficient heat supply and distribution into new
and existing developments, with increasing contributions from renewable
sources over time.
Direct development proposals to growth corridors, in particular where heat
networks can most easily be developed and maintained, and at densities
sufficient to make schemes viable.
Consider cross-boundary co-ordination.


Identify and compare the likely environmental effects of alternative energy
supply options, considering the impact on the achievement of Scottish
Government climate change, energy and heat targets.
Identify opportunities for harnessing low carbon or renewable heat sources.
Consider how existing or planned low carbon or renewable heat
infrastructure could meet the needs of planned development.
Map the potential for linking sources of heat with areas of high heat demand
or need, identifying areas where there is potential for new district heating
networks or an extension to an existing one.
Identify the potential for extending low carbon or renewable heat
infrastructure in regeneration areas as an integral part of masterplanning.
Integrate heat networks and associated energy centres within green
networks and other public sector managed assets e.g. schools, hospitals,
swimming pools.

Plan Policy
Develop policies which support the development of heat networks and heat
derived from efficient, low carbon or renewable sources, considering co-
location of heat emitters and heat users. N.B Where the generation of
renewable heat can be incorporated in development, this can contribute to
meeting Section 3F obligations.
Develop policies which encourage proposed development to either connect
to existing or heat distribution infrastructure or to be designed so they are
capable of being connected in the future.

Provide detailed guidance to support the consideration of heat related
proposals, such as locating energy centres to fit with more effective layouts
for homes and mixed-use communities, handling noise and pollution control,
and designing in heat infrastructure required for district heating such as
thermal storage towers.

Plans Action
Consider setting up a working group on heat. Include a range of
stakeholders, including principal heat providers and anchor heat load
representatives. Identify tasks such as progressing heat mapping and
initiatives aimed at delivering and extending heat networks, and maintain
momentum with stakeholders to realise renewable heat objectives identified in
the development plan.

Use the heat map to help determine whether connection to an existing heat
network, developing a new district heating scheme or an individual property
solution is the most viable option.
Encourage developers to future proof designs where connection to a district
heating at a future date is a possibility. Request an energy statement based on
the heat hierarchy in support of a planning application. This would be expected
to show heat from renewable sources or a capability to progress towards this at
a future date.

Information to
As above, in order to identify heat options, encourage applicants to submit
an energy statement proportionate to the scale of new developments. These
may be informed by heat map information and include an assessment of
whether an individual property or district heating solution is the more viable.
The statement should identify any available sources of heat or other factors
such as where land should be safeguarded for future district heating

whether an individual or district heating solution is more appropriate,
taking account of the potential heat sources (geothermal, biomass, energy
from waste, modular systems using heat pumps) available;
connections to existing or proposed networks;
the phasing of larger schemes to deliver benefits towards the transition to
renewable sources of heat supply or the growth of the heat network.
the potential for integrating with green networks to ease connection at a
future date.
siting and design in relation to the provision of sufficient space to
accommodate an energy centre, visual impact, public safety and amenity
how the development will contribute to the achievement of renewable heat

Technical Information

Planning and Heat

An individual property option for the generation and supply or renewable heat may be a preferable
alternative to connection to existing and new district heating schemes. The most viable option
depends on a number of factors including location, scale, available heat supply, demand, proximity
to existing heat networks etc.
Heat storage and distribution infrastructure
Heat storage and distribution infrastructure differs from gas infrastructure in two respects. Firstly,
it relies on hot water rather than natural gas, and can therefore be expected to induce fewer
anxieties and secondly, it serves a localised community, rather than the national grid.
Heat Mapping

Heat maps identify areas of high heat demand and need, as well as supply.

High heat demand tends to be associated with urban areas where denser building layouts are
more commonplace and where there are buildings with high heat demand (anchor heat loads),
such as schools and hospitals and large public buildings. However, high heat demand is not
exclusive to these areas and there might also be areas within city which are less densely
populated and have lower heat demand than suburban / rural locations.

Heat maps can also identify areas of high need such as fuel poor areas or off gas grid
communities, where there may be a policy objective to deliver more efficient, secure and
sustainable heat

Heat supply opportunities can also be identified by locating sources of waste streams, surplus heat
(e.g. from distilleries / industrial uses), deep geothermal operations, sites suitable for biomass (e.g.
through proximity to existing and planned woodlands, sawmills etc.)

Heat maps can assist in spatial planning and co-locating areas of high heat demand and need with
heat supply opportunities. Heat maps can show links between development plan proposals, and
can assist with regeneration strategies and masterplanning for major sites. The heat map can
guide future heat network development.

Some Potential Heat Mapping Components

& surplus
heat Surplus
from waste
& heat
Heat users:
Areas of
high heat
heat loads:
Off-gas grid
Demand Supply

District Heating and Cooling

A district heating system uses hot water to deliver heat to properties through a pipe network. Each
property has a hydraulic interface unit which transfers heat from the network to provide space
heating and hot water within the building. The interface unit looks like a small boiler, but needs less
maintenance. It can also deliver cooling by the means of heat driven chillers. Energy centres
contain the heat source(s) and heat exchangers link each property to the heat distribution network.
Most heat networks consist of pre-insulated single steel flow and return pipes and storage or
booster facilities. In principle, any building, single dwellings, blocks of flats, hotels, hospital and
schools can be connected to a district heating network.
District heating networks can work from a range of technologies including biomass (heat only or
CHP), heat pumps (ground, air or water pumps, each offering a range of advantages including
modular installation and increased co-efficiencies of performance), solar thermal, deep
geothermal, energy from waste and fuel cells.

Heat Pumps

A heat pump extracts low temperature heat from a source and upgrades it to a higher temperature.
Heat pumps are capable of delivering approximately three units of heat for each unit of electricity
consumed and can achieve significant carbon savings relative to conventional electric heating
systems. However, they are not carbon free unless the electricity is generated from renewable
sources. Heat pumps can use air, water, ground and deep geothermal and in modularised
networks alongside CHP and district heating.

Heat Sources

There is a range of potential renewable heat sources, some of which are covered in related online
advice for:

Woody biomass

Deep geothermal

Energy from waste


Developing heat systems based on local resources creates economic opportunities, through for
example the supply of wood fuel
. Non-renewable heat sources may be acceptable where there is
potential for conversion to renewable heat at a later date. Options include non-biomass CHP gas
or other fossil fuel, heat pumps, exhaust Air Heat Recovery (EAHR) and energy from waste.

Examples of Operating and Expanding District Heating Schemes:

Shetland Heat and Power

Aberdeen Heat and Power

Fife Heat Map

Fife: Cardenden Heat and Power

Use Woodfuel Scotland

Useful References

The Potential and Costs of District Heating Networks

Conserve and Save Energy: Energy Efficiency Action Plan

Renewable Heat Action Plan Update December 2011

Expert Commission on District Heating

Outline Heat Vision

Renewable Heat in Scotland (2011)

The Future of Heating: Meeting the challenge (March 2013)

Community Energy: Urban Planning for a Low Carbon Future

Community Energy: Planning, Development and Delivery

CHPA presents Big Offer to Energy Secretary to boost community district heating

Community Renewable Energy Toolkit

Supplement to Planning Policy Statement 1: Planning and Climate Change.