Wednesday 28th February 2018
One of the building environment’s biggest events is taking place just next week. Ecobuild 2018 will look at technology and innovation within the industry but there will inevitably be a strong focus on the industry’s future too. How can there not be, in the wake of the Government’s recently unveiled Clean Growth Strategy: a long-term plan that aims to decarbonise the UK and help tackle climate change?
This is where liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) really has the chance to become an even more prominent player in providing environmentally-friendly energy for property developments off the gas grid.
When it comes to environmental performance, LPG emits 35% less CO2 than coal and 12% less that oil. It’s non-toxic, has no impact on soil, water or underground aquifiers and emits almost no black carbon, which is arguably the second biggest contributor to global warming. It also has lower greenhouse gas emissions than any other fossil fuel when measured on a total fuel cycle.
So far so good.
For housebuilders investigating off-grid solutions, the application of the product needs to be carefully considered. Thankfully, LPG behaves exactly the same as natural gas so it can easily fuel domestic household gas appliances like central heating boilers, cookers and AGAs, and is compatible with most advanced boilers and heating systems. When working with combination boilers, LPG provides heat and hot water on demand so there’s no need to worry about factoring expensive storage systems into development builds either.
Great news for housebuilders.
When installed in homes, LPG can be supplied in portable cylinders but is generally placed in bulk tanks provided by the gas supplier that can sit above or below ground, either within the plot’s boundary or, in the case of some developers, placed a distance from dwellings to ensure minimal disruption for householders during delivery of gas supplies. Innovations in technology ensure that these tanks are monitored remotely so that supplies are topped up when needed, and the householder can be reassured they will always have access to fuel.
Great news for homeowners.
In addition to the myriad of environmental benefits, it’s worth noting that the installation cost per plot of LPG when compared with electric, oil and air source heat pumps, is significantly cheaper too.
More good news for housebuilders.
With more than two million off-grid homes across the UK, and many more proposed, LPG can provide an immediate solution to help the Government, and the construction industry as a whole, to reach objectives specified within the Clean Growth Strategy on the need to significantly reduce carbon in rural Britain.
With a well-established supply infrastructure throughout the UK, LPG is widely available, making it a convenient alternative to homebuilders and developers that are looking to move away from high carbon coal and heating oil.
Which is great news for everyone.
For more information about LPG click here.
By Rob Shuttleworth, UKLPG Chief Executive
The trade association for the LPG and bioLPG industry in the UK