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Solar news 21 July 2011: RENEWABLE HEAT INCENTIVE PREMIUM PAYMENT DECC PRESS RELEASE

Filed under: Latest News

DECC UK gives money off green energy heaters

“Getting money off an eco heater will not just cut carbon emissions, it will also help create a market in developing, selling and installing kit like solar thermal panels or heat pumps.” (Energy and Climate Change Minister, Greg Barker)

DECC UK Press Release: PN11/064

21 July 2011

  • Up to £1,250 in government payments available to fit eco heaters
  • £15 million in total to support up to 25,000 installations, reviewed after £10m
  • Information line and website launched today 21 July 2011
  • Close monitoring of the technologies to help understand performance

Householders across the country could get up to £1,250 of government funding to help towards the cost of installing renewable heating systems such as biomass boilers, air and ground source heat pumps and solar thermal panels.

The Government’s new £15 million ‘Renewable Heat Premium Payment’ scheme – which will open for applications on 1st August this year until March next year – will support up to 25,000 installations.

The scheme will be mainly focused at around 4 million households in Great Britain not heated by mains gas, who have to rely on higher carbon forms of heating which also tend to be more expensive than gas, such as heating oil and electric fires to keep warm.

Participants will be asked to provide detailed feedback on their experience through a set of surveys.  This will allow Government to gather information to better understand renewable heat technologies.  The Government will also provide, for a significant sample of participants, additional meters for their heating equipment. This will provide more detailed information so DECC can compare manufacturers’ and installers’ claims about performance  with real data on energy use.

Climate Change Minister Greg Barker said:

“Today starts a new era in home heating because we’re making it more economical for people to go green by providing discounts off the cost of eco heaters. This should be great news for people who are reliant on expensive oil or electric heating as the Premium Payment scheme is really aimed at them.

“Getting money off an eco heater will not just cut carbon emissions, it will also help create a market in developing, selling and installing kit like solar thermal panels or heat pumps.”

How to apply

The Premium Payment scheme is run by the Energy Saving Trust. From today an information line and website will go live to provide people with more information. Householders can call 0800 512 012 or visit www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/RHPP [External link]

Householders must ensure they have basic energy efficiency measures in place before applying on 1st August. Grants will be available on a first come first served basis.

From 1st August, grants for the following technologies will be available:

  • Solar thermal hot water panels – £300 grant (available to all households regardless of the type of heating system used)
  • Biomass boiler – £950 grant (for homes without mains gas heating)
  • Ground Source Heat Pump – £1250 grant (for homes without mains gas heating)
  • Air source heat pump – £850 grant (for homes without mains gas heating)

£3m of the £15m will be set aside for registered social landlords to improve their housing stock. Details of how to apply for these funds will be announced at a later date.
Philip Sellwood, Chief Executive, Energy Saving Trust, said:

“Our field trials have shown high levels of householder satisfaction with heat technologies. When people have the kit installed in their homes they really see the benefit. Of course there is still more to be learnt about how to get the most out of the technologies – but the more they’re out there in people’s homes, the more they become part of daily life.

“Without a doubt, the main barrier that prevents people from taking the plunge is the up-front capital cost. This is a great start in overcoming this obstacle.”

People who have installed kit under the Premium Payment scheme could  receive support through the Renewable Heat Incentive, providing they meet the eligibility criteria of the scheme when it is introduced.

Renewable Heat Incentive for industry, business and communities

The Government is also introducing financial assistance for industry, business and communities to generate their own renewable heat.  It is intended that the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) will be open for applications from 30th September and administered by Ofgem E-Serve. Those interested in finding out information ahead of being able to apply in September can contact Ofgem E-Serve from on 0845 200 2122 or by visiting www.ofgem.gov.uk/rhi [External link].

Notes to editors:

  1. A factsheet on the Premium Payment scheme can be found on the DECC website.
  2. The RHPP scheme makes available £15m of support for up to 25,000 renewable heat installations in homes, with a review point as the £10m limit is approached.
  3. The scheme is open to householders in England, Scotland and Wales. [NOT Nothern Ireland] It will open on 1st August 2011 operating on a first come first serve basis, but in any case will close on 31st March 2012.
  4. We will be monitoring the installations – through surveys and through a significant sample with meters – across all the technologies, because it is important that we understand more about how these technologies perform in a variety of situations. Any metering equipment will be provided free of charge. All participants will be required to complete surveys and provide us with feedback on their experiences.
  5. Currently half of the UK’s carbon emissions come from the energy used to generate heat. In the transition to a low carbon economy, the renewable heat financial support mechanisms that Government is introducing have an important role providing average savings between now and 2020 of 4.4 million tonnes of carbon per year. That’s equivalent to the annual carbon emissions of 2 typical new gas power stations.
  6. It is intended that the Renewable Heat Incentive for industry, business and communities will open for applications on 30th September, subject to State Aids Approval.  The tariffs will be paid for 20 years to eligible technologies that have been installed since 15th July 2009 with payments made for each kWh of renewable heat produced.
  7. Government confirms that renewable heat installations installed in homes since 15th July 2009 could receive the Renewable Heat Incentive once it comes in, provided they meet the eligibility criteria. They have also confirmed that this could include those who receive support under the RHPP scheme. Government has not yet published its proposals for how the RHI will work in the domestic sector, including eligibility criteria.

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