The government’s October 2021 budget promises 100% relief of business rates for eligible low carbon heat networks and a commitment to support green investment and decarbonisation of non-domestic buildings. This is expected to provide approximately £750 million of support to businesses, to encourage investments to meet net zero targets in the next five years.
Business rates are generally charged on non-domestic buildings. There has been some contention about whether or not business rates should be levied for energy centres providing heat to residential-led developments. However, this now provides cost certainty for low-carbon (definition tbc) heat networks that could beneficially impact resident heat bills or ESCO capital investment. More details are expected later this year, through a technical consultation and changes should take effect from 2023.
The government is also planning to introduce an exemption in business rates for green investments. These will include onsite renewable energy generation and storage, such as solar panels and battery storage used with renewables and electrical vehicle charging points.