Heat Network Metering and Billing Regulations – what registered providers need to be aware of

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Published: 17th December 2021
Area: Corporate & Commercial

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Social Housing providers should be aware of recent changes to the Heat Network Metering and Billing Regulations.

The Heat Network (Metering and Billing) (Amendment) Regulations 2020 (SI 2020/1221) (2020 Regulations) were made on 5 November 2020 and come into force on 27 November 2020. They are accompanied by an explanatory memorandum. The Regulations amend the Heat Network (Metering and Billing) Regulations 2014 (SI 2014/3120) (2014 Regulations), which transposed the metering and billing requirements in the Energy Efficiency Directive (2012/27/EU).

Heat networks deliver space heating, process heating, hot water, and cooling from a central energy source to multiple sites and buildings (district heat networks), or multiple dwellings and non-domestic units within a building (communal heat networks). The 2014 Regulations aimed to drive energy efficiency through meter installation and billing based on consumption.

The first part of the heat regulations, launched in 2014, requires heat network operators to complete a notification of data from all qualifying heat networks to BEIS. This process must be repeated every four years from the date of the original submission.

The second part of the regulations came into effect on 27 November 2020 and requires heat network operators to determine if they must install heat meters or heat cost allocators into their buildings.

To define which networks will be required to install, BEIS has introduced three building classes:

Viable – Those who must install heat meters

Open – Those who must complete a viability exercise to determine if they are required to install meters or heat cost allocators

Exempt – No action required

If buildings fall into the open class, heat network operators are required to complete a tool to assess whether it is cost-effective to install heat metering devices. The deadline to determine building classes and to complete the cost-effectiveness tool was 27 November 2021.

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Sushma is a renewable energy specialist having advised on numerous renewable energy projects and on heat networks.

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