New Build Heat Standard: consultation - part two

We are seeking views on our detailed proposals for a New Build Heat Standard (NBHS) to prohibit the use of direct emissions heating systems in new buildings warranted from April 2024.

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Executive Summary

To meet our statutory climate change targets,[1] we must ensure that all buildings are green and fit for the long term in our zero emissions future. Heat decarbonisation is a significant lever in achieving this. New buildings can, and will, lead the way in Scotland.

This consultation paper builds on the 2020-21 New Build Heat Standard (NBHS) Scoping Consultation[2] (NBHS Consultation: Part I) by setting out how the Scottish Government intends to regulate to prohibit the use of direct emissions heating (DEH) systems in new buildings from 2024 onwards. A DEH system is one which produces greenhouse gas emissions at the point of use.[3]

The Scottish Government is seeking your views on the key areas relating to these proposals, which will help to ensure that the regulations enforced from 2024 onwards are achievable and effective.

Our proposals to develop the NBHS have coincided with the recent conclusion of the Building Standards Energy Review.[4] The improved energy efficiency standards for new buildings, set under the revised building regulations, will pave the way for the implementation of the NBHS in 2024.

Key proposals

  • From 1 April 2024, new buildings applying for a building warrant will be prohibited from using direct emissions heating systems to meet their space and hot water heating and cooling demand.
  • Instead, the use of zero direct emissions heating (ZDEH) technologies will be required.
  • This will mean an increase in the deployment of ZDEH systems, such as heat pumps and heat networks, in new buildings across Scotland.
  • Bioenergy is not considered to be a ZDEH technology.

This will apply to:

  • both new domestic and non-domestic buildings, as well as the conversion of existing buildings.
  • any installed heating system within the curtilage of the building (both main and any other fixed heating system).



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