Can oil hold its market share?

Oil future in market debated by OFTEC speakers

Still fighting for oil heating and cooking, OFTEC celebrated its 21st birthday with this impressive cake baked and decorated by a member of its staff

Speakers at OFTEC’s spring conference debated oil’s future  role in home energy provision.

“In the face of the government’s agenda to move rural communities to air and ground source heat pumps and biomass, we’ll consider the threats and meet them,” said OFTEC chairman Barry Gregory.

“With over 60,000 oil boilers sold annually in the UK to more than one million domestic and 250,000 commercial oil users, we will not roll over,” he added.  “We’re reasserting oil in the marketplace.  To this end, we’re working with members and oil distributors to promote the use of high efficiency boilers and bio liquids.”

Francis Bean of the Energy Saving Trust spoke of ongoing heat pumps trials which have so far shown that the technology is not competing adequately with incumbent heating systems. Jeremy Hawksley remarked:  “Although favoured by government, there’s still a long way to go on heat pumps.”

Francis stressed that greater acceptance of heat pumps was dependent on many factors, not least better installer skills, greater knowledge and more independent testing to raise consumer confidence.   “As consumers wait to be convinced, there’s a chance for oil to hold on to its market share,” added Jeremy. www.oftec.org

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