Renewables Heat Incentive
At last, a couple of weeks ago, the Renewables Heat Incentive (RHI) consultation was released by the government (Department for Energy and Climate Change). This should do for sustainable heating technologies what the FiT did for PV – though hopefully without the controversial upset around Christmas!
I think it is about time we had a solid support mechanism for renewable heat.
I carried out strategic studies about 15 years ago on technology options to reduce carbon, help the country’s energy security and help individual home owners, and several heat technologies came to the fore. One of the biggest hitters all round is replacing electric heating with biomass heating, especially in rural areas where you get a rural employment boost too. Unsurprisingly, many good ones are now being suggested for support; biomass heating, heat pumps, solar hot water and so on.
The idea of the RHI is that, like the FiT, instead of receiving a bill you get a cheque!
Of course, you do have to buy a piece of equipment (and fuel for biomass) but the income should pay for any costs above a standard heating system and in general the result should be a good investment.
If they stick to their timetable, the RHI will be launched in summer 2013 – just ready for the winter heating season.
The consultation on proposals for a domestic scheme sets out our proposals for longer term support to householders who install renewable heating kit such as biomass boilers, heat pumps and solar thermal into homes. The RHI for householders is aimed at any householder looking to replace their current heating with renewable heating kit or householders who have installed any such technology since 15 July 2009. It is intended that householders will get paid for each kWh of heat they would be expected produce under the current proposals. More information on this consultation and how to respond to it can be found on the Renewable Heat Incentive: proposals for a domestic scheme page. Deadline for responses is 7 December 2012.