The highly successful event was attended by 26 MPs or their researchers with a number of MPs who were unable to make the event in person making requesting information taking the total number engaged with nearer to 40.
The event was an opportunity to explain the benefits of HVO, and to launch a detailed study on the 17 homes in the village of Kehelland that are participating in the industry led HVO demonstration project.
Malcolm Farrow, head of public affairs for OFTEC, commented: “The MPs appeared well-informed about the challenges of decarbonising off-grid heating and all were interested in broadly supportive of our plans – some extremely so.”
The event followed a programme of engagement led by the industry trade bodies and was timed to maximise impact ahead of the second reading of the Energy Bill. The industry’s ongoing efforts to engage with government on the subject are clearly succeeding, as was reflected at the reading with several MPs seeking to promote the use of HVO as well as voice their concerns about affordable decarbonisation of off gas grid homes. The need for greater technology choice was also highlighted.
Hilary Benn (Labour) commented: “I think we will need all the current technologies and all the technologies that have yet to be invented to meet this challenge.”
George Eustice (Conservative) said: We need a diversity of different technologies because it is essential that we have all the tools in the box to achieve our objectives.”
Ken Cronin, CEO UKIFDA, welcomed the increasingly vocal cross-party support for renewable liquid fuel as an immediate, and affordable, solution to home heat decarbonisation but also stressed the need for the Government to hear the clear message and act now.
OFTEC and UKIFDA will continue to work to build further support and momentum for the campaign, which seeks to amend the Energy Bill to see the creation of an RTFO-type support scheme for renewable liquid fuels in heating, and to see the duty levied on HVO aligned with kerosene.