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New Domestic Heat Pump Association Unveiled

Working alongside key players from the mainstream heating industry including Worcester Bosch, Dimplex, Baxi, Danfoss Heat Pumps, Vaillant, Stiebel Eltron, Zehnder UK and Myson, BEAMA has created the BEAMA Domestic Heat Pump Association. Its chairman is Chris Davis, Head of Renewables at Dimplex.

Kelly Butler, BEAMA’s marketing director (pictured) explains: “For a couple of years BEAMA has been active in this sector having negotiated the ASHP grant under LCBP, pushed for the upcoming SAP Q scheme, and steered the Code for Sustainable Homes to give credits to ASHPs as a low zero carbon technology.

Invited by DECC to lead a Heat Pump Policy Forum shows the standing we have as the leading authority on domestic heating with heat pumps. The new association is a natural fit.

“The domestic heat pump sector has vast potential - up to 2020 it’s estimated to be 1.4-1.75 million units, largely coming from the ‘low hanging fruit’ of 4 million off gas homes. For this to happen, we have urged the Government to make CERT and CESP more attractive to ensure penetration of heat pumps. Also, Government has to help industry with capacity building - the scale of the challenge requires 8,000 installers, that’s 4,000 two-person contracting teams.”

Mr Butler says that presentations from members, EDF and Summit Skills concluded that essential ‘building blocks’ included funding to support a web portal to identify required skills and signposting to available courses (manufacturer or college).

Training installers was key, especially in line with how Government supported training for condensing boilers. Other plans include sharing of market statistics, a heat pump specific guide for planners, ensuring SAP can calculate the renewable content of heat pumps and incentive assessments.

The industry has explained to Government that the latest SAP consultation has an un-strategic carbon figure, which is too high to grow the market in new-build. The Government is considering the industry’s view that it needs to be longer term in how it is set, and well below the consultation’s 0.59kg CO2/kWh.

“We’re demonstrating that if you overlay a 2008 Code 1 house with an air source heat pump onto a de-carbonisation trajectory similar to that in the Climate Change Committee Report (December 2008), by 2030 it will become a high end code 4 house with a reduction in CO2 emissions. This could happen sooner if the dwelling’s fabric is improved. That is, heat pumps are sustainable and progressively saving carbon over time,” continues Kelly Butler.

“Case studies from Sweden and Germany show that price and investment return affect take up of heat pumps. Therefore, the Renewable Heat Incentive is a very sensible policy move - but it must give payback within five years and be at a higher level for this period to cover capital outlay and any loan financing. It should be allowed to operate alongside CERT and other funding mechanisms to push the price down and reduce the payback in that five years.

“DECC should issue guidance to all local authorities so planners are aware that heat pumps are renewable, and guide them as to how to determine their renewable content.

“BEAMA is well on the way to being the priority voice within Whitehall for domestic heat pumps. We’re in ongoing discussions with further potential members and will continue to work with Summit Skills, EDF and other energy suppliers to grow the market to its full potential. Plus, Government has welcomed the industry’s views and has asked for a detailed heat pump market development plan and a future meeting to progress proposed initiatives.”

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