Industry has welcomed climate change minister, Greg Barker’s clear signal that he would explore ways to change the Renewable Heat Incentive quickly to allow air to water heat pumps to compete fairly in the market for commercial renewable heating systems.
In a meeting on the 6th September with the directors of four trade bodies representing the sector, the minister said that the industry had made a “very strong” case and, subject to undertaking the proper processes internally within government, he would seek to find a way to fast-track the inclusion of air to water commercial heat pumps ahead of other changes to the Renewable Heat Incentive planned for next summer.
Dave Sowden, chief executive of the Micropower Council, commented: “We are delighted that the Minister has given such a positive response to many months of calls to end a harmful distortion in the commercial renewable heating market. With the Minister foursquare behind the case for doing so, we’re now very optimistic this will be fixed as quickly as possible.”
Tony Bowen, president of the Heat Pumps Association, added: “We are delighted that the Minister has made a firm commitment to the inclusion of air to water heat pumps which will now be able to take their rightful place alongside ground to water heat pumps in the RHI to provide a further important and robust strand to the renewable agenda. Timing is, of course, imperative and we trust that we will see this happen for the beginning of 2013.”
Kelly Butler, marketing director of BEAMA, added: “We are delighted that after a good deal of industry collaborative working with officials, the Minister has made a strong commitment to support a vitally important renewable heat technology. Timing is of course a fundamental issue now and we will be seeking a solid proposition to take to market from no later than January 2013.”
Roger Webb, Director of the Heating and Hot Water Industry Council, added: “This is a very welcome development and one that will give a much needed boost to the air source heat pump industry”