District heating systems are subject to new regulations with a deadline of 31st December 2015. This means that heat suppliers will have a number of new duties, such as to make a notification to the National Measurement & Regulation Office.
This is required by The Heat Network (Metering and Billing) Regulations 2014 which implements some of the requirements in the Energy Efficiency Directive (EED).
The Government estimate that there are thousands of heat networks in the UK and these supply hundreds of thousands of dwellings, commercial premises, and public buildings. Many of these heat networks are considered to be District Heat Networks.
A system is considered to be a District Heat Network when thermal energy in the form of steam, hot water or chilled liquids are supplied centrally, through a network, and received by final customers. This would usually be the supply to a number of sites or to a minimum of two buildings for heating, cooling and hot water.
Further requirements come into force later next year on the 31st December 2016, when minimum provisions for metering and billing will be needed.
Meters will need to be provided to measure heat used by each final user and heat suppliers will need to accurately bill final users for the heat they have consumed at least once a year.