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Community Heating - A Political Challenge?

I just watched an interesting 'article' on YouTube outlining a quite efficient solution for community heating which is a fairly common concept in some parts of the world, but less so here in the UK.

At a high level (all I understand) it is using surplus (probably night-time generated) renewable energy to store heat in sand with a high level of efficiency, and a likely typical storage time of several days with the potential a lot longer when required. This is then used to provide community-level heating. could we do the same, should we do the same?

This is interesting as I think it highlights some of the 'real world' issues we have in blending decarbonisation with gaining community benefit, namely the potential imbalance between short-term financial gain by a developer and long-term benefit of the community.

Whilst the technology is not hugely expensive, it is certainly not free. So why would a developer invest at the point of build? Without political will and policy to force them to do so, it simply won't happen in the UK or North America.

We keep hearing that the percentage of people living in large towns and cities is going to continue to grow at a high rate or probably even accelerate, this means large-scale new housing and provides the opportunity to install heating systems which meet the requirements of the modern world as well as the residents.

It will require significant political will to make both insulation and community heating a priority, many home occupiers (tenants) will have no control over this and developers will just seek the solutions with the lowest initial capital cost. If the right decisions are made, the long-term benefits to tenants can be considerable, as can the environmental benefits. Does this political will resist? I'm afraid the cynic in me thinks not.

The website of the supplier of this technology can be found here and is easy to follow.

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