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Solid Fuels: Heating

Question for Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

UIN 21189, tabled on 26 February 2020

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to his Department's press release entitled, Government takes bold action to cut pollution from household burning, published on 21 February 2020, what the evidential basis is for the statement that manufactured solid fuels are cheaper than house coal; and if he will make a statement.

Answered on

6 March 2020

Defra recognises that on face value, manufactured solid fuels (MSFs) are more expensive than coal, however, we are also aware that MSFs burn more efficiently than coal. Recent tests have found that coal is actually more expensive than MSFs when energy efficiency is taken into account. These tests suggest that coal burned on an open fire is more expensive per unit of heat output in all areas of England compared to the cheapest MSF fuel. The full results of the fuel efficiency tests have been published on and can be found at the following link: