2026 boiler ban faces backlash

Ministers are considering postponing the 2026 ban on oil-fired boilers, prompted by growing opposition from Conservative MPs and concerns about the impact on off-grid rural communities.

Ministers are reportedly contemplating a potential delay to the 2026 ban on oil-fired boilers.

The reconsideration comes in response to mounting opposition from Conservative MPs and escalating worries about the ban’s implications.

The proposed 2026 ban on oil-fired boilers is aimed at curbing carbon emissions and encouraging the adoption of greener heating alternatives.

However, this ban presents a particular challenge for approximately 1.7 million homes in off-grid rural areas across the UK.

These communities heavily rely on oil-fired boilers for heating, making them especially vulnerable to the policy change.

The ban could force homeowners in these regions to transition to more expensive heating solutions, primarily heat pumps, potentially imposing significant financial burdens.

Organisations like the Countryside Alliance have voiced their opposition, emphasizing that the ban could disproportionately affect rural communities.

Their concerns centre on the exacerbation of economic disparities and the risk of fuel poverty.

A source from Downing Street informed The Times that there is an ongoing discussion regarding various net zero policies, including the potential ban on gas boilers.

A spokesperson for the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero said: “We have consulted on new regulations to phase out boilers in homes and non-domestic buildings off the gas grid from 2026. We will confirm our plans when we publish our response to the consultation in due course.

“We are fully focused on meeting our aim of 600,000 heat pump installations a year by 2028, having offered grants of £5,000 and £6,000 towards the cost, totalling £81 million in vouchers to installers in the first year of our Boiler Upgrade Scheme.

“But we recognise that not all properties will be suitable for a heat pump and no one will be forced to install one.”