Zaanstad municipal authority intends to achieve climate-neutrality and is collaborating with a broad range of parties on developing a smart energy grid. One potential element of this is creation of a heat grid in East Zaandam (Zaanstad municipality) so that low-carbon heat can be used to heat housing association homes, new-build dwellings and other buildings. A business case for the heat grid itself has been drawn up by Alliander DGO (Alliander DGO 2018) and for the further heat distribution by Engie (Engie, 2018). In this study, commissioned by East Zaandam, the precise social costs and benefits of investing in renewable heat are investigated and the implications for municipal decision-making explored. A social cost-benefit analysis (SCBA) was carried out for a heat grid in East Zaandam, proceeding from the concrete business cases prepared by Alliander DGO and Engie.