Skip to content

Consultation launched to improve heat network design, build and operation

CIBSE and the CHPA are seeking industry feedback on the draft of the new publication Heat Networks: Code of Practice for the UK. With recent research outlining the potential for heat networks to supply up to 14% of heat needs by 2030, it is an opportune time to develop and implement minimum standards for district heating. These standards will help to enhance the quality of heat networks where necessary and reducing costs by helping to standardise procurement. 

This is the first Code of Practice to be published by CIBSE and the CHPA and seeks to provide clear and measurable outputs which will ensure that the heat network operates effectively and meets client and customer expectations. Setting minimum standards is a key step to provide greater confidence for specifiers and clients and these can also be included in the tendering/contracting process. It is hoped that the Code will provide a foundation for the CIBSE/CHPA partnership to provide specialist training, accreditation and registration in the sector.

CIBSE and the CHPA would particularly welcome feedback on the following areas:

  • whether the document is too prescriptive or too open to interpretation?
  • the feasibility (both technical and economic) of the proposals
  • particular issues for small players in the district heating market
  • does the Code of Practice address properly issues relating to the often fragmented stages of delivery of a heating network?
  • expressions of interest in a potential training, accreditation and registration program managed by CIBSE/CHPA.

Phil Jones, Chair of the Code of Practice Steering Committee and the CIBSE CHP-DH Group, said:

“The introduction of minimum standards for heat networks will be a step change in taking this sector to the next level. We are already working on supporting this with Training, Accreditation and Registration of heat network professionals to implement the standards and enhance the quality of district heating from design through to operation.”

CHPA Director Tim Rotheray said:

“District heating is focussed on delivering value for the consumer, putting them at the centre of a more local, more efficient energy system. It is because of that value that more than 50 Local Authorities are considering new district heating investments, contributing to Government’s ambitions for heat networks to go from 2% to 14% of UK heating demand by 2030.

“If we are to meet that ambition, with district heating expanding to urban areas all around the country, we need to ensure these investments are being installed and operated with only the highest of standards so that the consumer sees the clear benefits this energy efficiency infrastructure can provide. This Code of Practice is an important step to providing that assurance for consumers, and we look forward to our continuing work with CIBSE and our members to make sure these standards can be adopted across the industry.”

To read the draft and provide feedback, please visit the CHPA website or

For any enquiries about the Code of Practice or this consultation, please contact the steering committee via the Code of Practice secretariat: Hanae Chauvaud de Rochefort at [email protected] or Tel: 020 3031 8744.