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Heat pump grants fail to address major issue warns green heating expert

The newly unveiled Heat and Buildings strategy doesn’t go far enough to address major problems in the race to reach Net Zero, warns Tim Rook, Chief Markets Officer at Clade Engineering, a leading designer and manufacturer of CO2 heat pumps.  The long-awaited strategy was unveiled yesterday and contains details of the

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BDC 318 : Jul 2024

clade engineering

Heat pump grants fail to address major issue warns green heating expert

The newly unveiled Heat and Buildings strategy doesn’t go far enough to address major problems in the race to reach Net Zero, warns Tim Rook, Chief Markets Officer at Clade Engineering, a leading designer and manufacturer of CO2 heat pumps.  The long-awaited strategy was unveiled yesterday and contains details of the Government’s £3,9bn plan to improve access to energy efficient heating technologies. Part of this is a £450m boiler upgrade scheme, which will allow homeowners to apply for grants of £5,000 towards installation of low-carbon heating systems, such as heat pumps. However, when delving into the details, Tim is concerned that the plan doesn’t go far enough. “It’s great to see the Government finally moving on the climate critical issue of heat and promoting heat pumps as the best form of sustainable heating technology on the market. However, the strategy is far too small and fails to adequately address the major issue of the difference between the price of gas and that of power. If the Government were to rebalance this it would transform the market and really drive mass adoption of low carbon heat pumps,” Tim explains. “The strategy is further confused by the inclusion of hydrogen and weakened by many follow-on consultations and studies. There is some content that is likely political bluster, such as the mention of 25% price reductions for green technologies and its disappointing to see house buildings being given at least three more years of building inefficient housing when we could be building better right now.” He adds Decarbonising heat is one of the most effective ways of lowering emissions in the UK, but with 85% of UK homes reliant on gas for heating, more needs to be done to improve access to green heating technologies. £5,000 grants will help just 90,000 households, a drop in the ocean against the 600,000 annual installations needed by 2028 to reach Net Zero.  Time is of the essence, as Tim explains,“There is a fixed budget of carbon we can release into the atmosphere before we exceed our target of 1.5C of global warming. If we fritter that budget away in a short period of time, we don’t get it back. Leaders have to stop being wilfully blind, recognise the critical risks we face and act fast to mitigate them, for all our sakes.

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Construction sector urged to ‘step-up’ in race to adopt greener heating solutions

Following recent revelations that UK’s home gas boilers emit twice as much CO2 as all power stations, the construction sector is being urged to accelerate the switch to greener heating solutions such as CO2 heat pumps, which have been described as ‘the future of green heating in the UK’. The government’s target of 600,000 heat pump installations per year by 2028 is an encouraging step but Tim Rook, Chief Markets Officer at Clade Engineering, a leading designer and manufacturer of CO2 heat pumps, is concerned that the UK is a long way off the pace from hitting that target. “Burning natural gas has historically been a cheap, reliable and relatively safe way to heat buildings in this country. But as this study shows, things are going to have to change if we have any hope of reaching Net Zero. CO2 heat pumps are the future of green heating in the UK – they are more efficient, cleaner and have a lower total cost of ownership than gas boilers,” explains Tim. “We need to step up – and that’s going to take more awareness and more clamour across the construction, facilities management, property investment and property management industries,” suggests Tim. The recent energy price crisis adds further weight to this argument and has been caused by several long, medium and short-term factors coming into play at the same time. It’s been coming down the tracks for a while, and touches on a couple of things that Clade Engineering consider extremely important – the decarbonisation and security of Britain’s energy supply. “Installing a heat pump is one of the best things a business can do to decarbonise, and it’s fairly straightforward if engineered correctly. A heat pump will deliver a 60 to 80% carbon reduction and when used for cooling too it’ll do even better. If plugged into a digital platform to optimise performance and provide grid flexibility services it will be able to deliver even more carbon reductions and cost savings. “For the good of the planet, we need to pull our collective fingers out,” says Tim.

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