The Scottish Government has published its Heat in Buildings Strategy (October 2021), which sets out its vision for the future of heat in buildings.

The Strategy sets out the actions it is taking in the buildings sector to deliver its climate change commitments, maximise economic opportunities, and ensure a just transition, including helping to address fuel poverty.

The Strategy sets out the pathway for cutting greenhouse gas emissions from our homes and buildings – which currently account for about a fifth of Scotland’s emissions – by more than two thirds by 2030. Delivering this will need good standards of energy efficiency across the building stock, as well as switching from fossil fuels to zero emissions heating in over a million homes and the equivalent of 50,000 non-domestic buildings including workplaces and community buildings.

How the Community and Renewable Energy Scheme (CARES) will support the Strategy

The Scottish Government’s vision is that by 2045 Scotland’s homes and buildings are cleaner, greener and easy to heat, and that heating our buildings no longer contributes to climate change.

This transition to net zero emissions will touch the lives of almost everyone in Scotland, which is why the Scottish Government is committed to a just transition that puts people and communities at the heart of its approach, ensuring solutions reflect local characteristics and take into consideration community ambitions and priorities.

The Scottish Government will continue to support communities to work together and champion and support heat decarbonisation through its Community and Renewable Energy Scheme (CARES).

CARES supports community groups, rural SMEs and other eligible organisations across Scotland seeking to develop local and community renewable projects by providing free, and impartial advice through our network of local energy advisors and a variety of tailored funding and finance support throughout project development. We have a local heat development specialist within the team to help support the development of heat projects.

Through CARES, up to £8.25 million has been made available this financial year to assist community groups in developing renewable energy projects, supporting the growth of community and locally owned energy in Scotland.

Over the next few years, CARES will have a greater focus on supporting heat decarbonisation in local communities and supporting community engagement in Local Heat and Energy Efficiency Strategies (LHEES). This will give greater focus and priority to decarbonisation, particularly heat decarbonisation, acting as the driver for community led action.

Read the Scottish Government’s Heat in Buildings Strategy.

Do you have an idea or proposal to decarbonise your community building?

If so, get in touch with the Local Energy Scotland team today.