20 January 2016

Today Citizens Advice published a report on district heating following an information request that was issued to local authorities last year. 

In response to the report Heat Trust said:

“We welcome that Citizens Advice considers Heat Trust to have established well thought-out customer protection standards. It is encouraging that 76% of suppliers in the report said they would consider joining Heat Trust.

The purpose of Heat Trust is to offer protection to as many customers as possible, by establishing a common standard in the quality and level of customer protection that should be given to residential and micro-business heat customers. 

In line with obligations placed on gas and electricity suppliers, Heat Trust requires its members to maintain a Priority Services Register and provide additional services to vulnerable customers.

Members of Heat Trust must also carry out regular inspections of heat meters (every 24 months), and provide clear and transparent bills to customers, in line with the Heat (Metering and Billing) Regulations 2014. And when things do go wrong, customers on heat networks registered with Heat Trust can refer their complaint to the Energy Ombudsman.

We remain fully committed to working with Government and wider industry stakeholders to ensure that as many communal and district heating networks as possible can join Heat Trust, and in turn provide protection to their customers. ”


Notes to editors

Citizens Advice

In July 2015, Citizens Advice issued an information request to local authorities in England, Wales and Scotland on district heating networks. The analysis from the information request was published in January 2016 and set out 6 key recommendations.

The report from Citzens Advice, ‘District Heating Networks: analysis of information request’ can be found here.

About Heat Trust

Heat Trust is a voluntary industry-led customer protection scheme that recognises best practice. The Association for Decentralised Energy announced in March that it was formally backing Heat Trust. 

It puts in place a common standard in the quality and level of protection given by heat energy suppliers to their residential and micro-business customers. It also provides an independent process for settling disputes between customers and their heat supplier. This is provided by the Energy Ombudsman which is operated by the Ombudsman Services.

Heat Trust protection is aimed at heat energy suppliers who contract with metered or unmetered domestic and micro business properties where the heat customer pays their supplier directly for their heat energy. Where appropriate, the level of protection afforded under the Scheme seeks to replicate that of gas and electricity customers.

More information, including an application pack can be found on the Heat Trust website: www.heattrust.org