Sweden's Vattenfall to launch UK low-carbon heat network

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A Vattenfall cooling plant is seen in Berlin, Germany August 15, 2017. REUTERS/Axel Schmidt

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LONDON, Sept 21 (Reuters) - Swedish energy supplier Vattenfall plans to launch a low-carbon heat network in London to help decarbonise half a million homes, commercial and public facilities by 2040, it said on Tuesday.

The heating sector in Britain has been traditionally hard to decarbonise. More than 25 million homes still have boilers which use natural gas, the company said in a statement.

Heating in buildings alone is one of the largest sources of UK carbon emissions, accounting for 21% of the total, according to official government estimates.

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The company said the planned network would be installed over three phases.

It will save 26 million  tonnes  of carbon emissions over a 20-year period, using zero- or low-emission sources of heat such as ground or water source heat pumps, or waste heat from industrial processes.

Vattenfall will begin construction of the heat network in southeast London in 2022, which will serve 10,500 homes by 2024 and 75,000 homes by 2030.

By the 2040s, more than half a million homes should be connected to it.

In Britain, natural gas prices have sky-rocketed due to low gas storage stocks, high European Union carbon prices, low liquefied natural gas tanker deliveries due to higher demand from Asia, and other factors, forcing some small energy suppliers out of business. read more

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Reporting by Marwa Rashad; Editing by Nina Chestney, Jan Harvey and Alison Williams

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