HVO demonstration project going from strength to strength

As announced in the last issue of Oil Installer, an expanded HVO demonstration project has been taking place over winter. In all, 15 fuel distributors have been involved and 93 homes and businesses have been successfully converted, with a further 33 scheduled. The sites chosen are right across the UK and reflect the wide range of situations where oil heating is used.

The demonstration project builds on the successful smaller scale trial run the previous winter. The appliances converted include modern condensing boilers, older standard efficiency boilers, a hybrid boiler/heat pump system and an Aga.

The aim was to simulate the real-world deployment of HVO, so the installations have not been subject to the kind of extensive monitoring that would occur in a trial where the outcome was in doubt. Positive outcomes were expected and that’s exactly what has happened. All the conversions have been entirely successful, and no significant problems have occurred.

The current project has confirmed what we expected – that HVO is an ideal replacement for kerosene. The owners of the systems have all been extremely happy about the experience and as you’d expect, there’s been a strong feel-good factor. That’s hardly surprising, it’s rewarding to know that you’re heating your home or business efficiently and reducing your emissions by almost 90% without any hassle or disruption!

The project team will review the next steps for the project in the coming weeks. Unfortunately, unlike the Government-funded electrification of heat demonstration project, industry has paid the full cost of the HVO work. It’s unlikely that we will be able to fully support the project at the current scale going forward. However, we hope to continue to demonstrate the benefits of HVO at a number of sites to enable politicians to see the fuel in action. There’s nothing like seeing a boiler running on HVO and speaking to a happy owner to understand why this is such a brilliant low carbon solution.

Here are a couple of examples of sites that have been converted.

Raise a toast to a net zero pub!

A pub in South Lincolnshire is raising a glass after becoming the first rural establishment in the country to achieve net-zero emissions with HVO.

The Five Horseshoes Inn in the village of Barholm reduced its carbon emissions by nearly 90% by adopting HVO as part of its heating solution. The fossil-free fuel, sustainably sourced from waste cooking oil, works in the pub’s existing oil heating system as a ‘drop-in’ replacement for kerosene. The pub then offset its remaining emissions with a tree planting scheme.

HVO passes second winter milestone with flying colours

In November 2020, a bungalow in the small village of Scorrier, near Redruth in Cornwall, was the first home to be converted to HVO as part of the current field trial and demonstration project. The property, which had previously relied on oil for heating, has now completed its second winter on HVO with no problems reported. The occupants are understandably very happy with the result and the success of conversions like this provide considerable confidence that HVO is a reliable kerosene replacement.