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Heat networks in the North East and Tees Valley

Heat networks form an essential and significant part of the UK’s plan to reduce carbon emissions, and The North East and Tees Valley are primed to lead the UK in delivering this.

The North East and Tees Valley represent the UK’s first designated ‘heat network cluster’ and have the fastest growing regional pipeline of projects. Companies based here can deploy at scale, drive down costs and develop next-generation innovations for clean heating solutions.

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The North East and Tees Valley

Investment type:

Foreign direct investment


Greener buildings, Sustainable infrastructure

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Sector and market opportunity

Demand for net zero heating solutions is growing as the UK seeks to decarbonise its heating and promote clean growth. The UK needs to achieve 19% of heating from clean heat networks by 2050 (up from 2% today). The region is in an excellent position to lead on this.

Companies can access a pipeline of opportunities including:

  • design and manufacture of pipe and insulation solutions
  • logistics, trenching and laying technologies
  • smart technologies for network management and metering
  • heat innovations using low-carbon heat sources

Growth prospects

The UK heat network project pipeline is valued at £1.2 billion (one of the largest in Europe) and continues to grow. The North East and Tees Valley’s own heat network pipeline is valued at about £500 million.


The region is home to the UK’s first heat network cluster. Existing district energy schemes include Gateshead District Energy Scheme, the Newcastle Helix District Energy Centre, and ground-breaking projects such as Seaham Garden Village and Core 364.


Direct access to locations worldwide, with flights to major cities in the UK and globally via Newcastle International Airport and Teesside International Airport.

The 4 major train stations offer fast and frequent rail links to London, Birmingham, Manchester and Edinburgh.

The 6 deep sea ports in the region (including the Port of Tyne) are strategic hubs for businesses; the east coast position is perfect to react quickly to transportation needs.

Local talent and skills

More than 25,000 are employed in the energy sector, and there’s experience in heat network delivery.

Five world-class universities offer courses to support heat networks.

Networks that can help influence and provide support include the Heat Networks Industry Council, the Energy Systems Catapult and the UK District Energy Association. The North East Energy Catalyst brings together the private and public sector to develop and showcase solutions to global energy challenges.

Research and expertise

The region is complemented by world-class research and opportunities to collaborate. Companies can benefit from access to the National Centre for Energy Systems Integration, the Tees Valley Net Zero Innovation Centre and the Durham Energy Institute.

Region Spotlight
North of England


The North of England is recognised as a global centre for creativity and design and attracts thriving international investment. This heritage of expertise and manufacturing know-how is well established on the world stage, and historically gave birth to the Industrial Revolution.

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Enabling clean growth

Heat networks will play a key role in accelerating and realising the UK’s net zero ambitions. A rapid growth in the pipeline of heat network projects demonstrates increased demand in both domestic and export markets.

Local and national government support

Funding through the Green Heat Network Fund will support projects to deliver increased volumes of low-carbon heat through the creation of new and more efficient networks.

North East councils have committed to being carbon neutral by 2030 and have ambitious plans in this sector. Local support through Strategic Economic Plans highlights growth opportunities and regional energy projects which will significantly contribute to regional and national net zero goals.

Success stories


Headquartered in Denmark, LOGSTOR is a large manufacturer of pre-insulated pipe systems.

LOGSTOR was an approved supplier of specialist pipes for significant projects in the region including the Energy Centre in Gateshead and the Leeds PiPES District Heating Scheme.


ENGIE is a French energy and services company with three main activities: production and supply of low-carbon energy services and regeneration.

In the UK, ENGIE is a strategic supplier to the UK government and in 2018 entered a joint venture with Newcastle City Council to develop and operate district energy schemes in the city over 40 years.


E.ON is an international, privately-owned energy supplier based in Essen, Germany. The company is leading the energy transition by offering customers a smart, sustainable and personalised energy solution.

E.ON operates more than 60 district heating networks in the UK, serving 30,000 residential and business customers. The Scotswood district heating site in central Newcastle serves nearly 400 properties, with an ambition to reach 1,800.

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