Red Wall backs hydrogen heating saving the UK £35 billion 

An exclusive opinion poll finds key political background seats backing hydrogen heating as a means of hitting net zero targets, avoiding unaffordable, upfront costs of the alternatives, saving the UK £35 billion. 

The YouGov poll was commissioned by not-for-profit trade body Energy and Utilities Alliance (EUA), to examine a range of questions about the UK’s energy future.  

Excluding ‘Don’t Knows’, 85 per cent of the 1600 residents across 18 red wall seats in the north of England back government plans to allow hydrogen to be blended with natural gas to reduce carbon emissions in the home, from 2023. This figure rises to 92 per cent of Labour voters.  

These findings support the recent publication by the Energy Networks Association of their Hydrogen blending delivery plan. 

Hydrogen can be safely blended into the natural gas network at levels up to 20 per cent without any changes required to gas boilers, cookers or fires, meaning consumers can reduce their carbon footprint automatically. Across the UK, this offers the potential of a 6 million tonnes a year carbon saving. 

Commenting on the results, Mike Foster the chief executive of Energy and Utilities Alliance said: “Energy prices are rightly top of the political agenda at the moment. But coming over the horizon is the challenge of net zero. Voters are angry about high energy bills now; they are also clearly dismissive of future government plans around low carbon heating in their homes. 

Voters are angry about high energy bills 

“It is crystal clear that voters currently on the gas grid want to stay connected to gas. They don’t want to be disconnected from mains gas and forced into an electric-only option. This should make ministers sit up and listen. The only way forward is to switch the gas network to a low carbon gas, such as hydrogen.”  

“When it comes to who pays for decarbonisation, the voters have again spoken. Nearly six in ten say they won’t pay a penny more, some are willing to contribute, but only a fraction of what the Government want them to pay. The prime minister said heat pumps cost “ten grand a pop” and at that price, fewer than three in a hundred will pay that.”  

“The good news is that the heating industry has agreed to keep hydrogen boilers the same price as current natural gas ones, so avoiding huge upfront bills that voters will not pay. Now is the time for the government to unveil its plans to support hydrogen gas networks and hydrogen-ready boilers, reassuring hard-pressed families about keeping the costs of net zero down.”