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UK Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI)

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UK:  Ofgem have reported that they have received an increasing number of complex questions about the eligibility of Ground Source Heat Pumps and shared ground arrays for both the Domestic and Non-Domestic RHI schemes.

In a statement Ofgem say they are aware that a number of installers are working on innovative developments, particularly in the social housing sector. These developments typically include shared ground arrays – with shared ground or water loops – providing heat to more than one heat pump unit located in each individual flat or house. As administrators of both schemes, Ofgem has set out a response to these new industry initiatives.

The 2014 Domestic RHI Regulations define a Ground Source Heat Pump as a plant that generates heat by absorbing energy stored in the form of heat from the ground, including water in the ground, or surface water, or both, and uses that energy to heat a liquid. It follows that a ground array forms part of the plant for the purposes of the Domestic RHI scheme.

Under the current Domestic RHI Regulations, any application involving a plant that is a heat pump seeking accreditation for the Domestic RHI can only be considered eligible if it provides heating solely to a single eligible property, assuming all other conditions are satisfied. 

Therefore a plant incorporating shared ground loop arrays that provide heat to more than one single eligible property is not eligible for the Domestic RHI scheme. However, a plant featuring a shared ground loop array, providing heat to multiple domestic properties, can be considered for the Non-Domestic scheme, assuming all other eligibility requirements are met for that scheme.

To find out more about both the Domestic and Non-Domestic RHI Schemes click here

 

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UK:  Mitsubishi Electric has teamed up with Green Deal advice service ‘Easy EPC’ to offer homeowners a full cashback on the cost of an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) and a Green Deal Assessment (GDA).

The six-month promotion launched last week coincides with the first anniversary of the Governments Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), the world’s first, long-term financial support programme for renewable heat.

All Ecodan systems (outdoor unit and cylinder) purchased, installed and commissioned between 9th April 2015 and 9th October 2015 will be eligible for a refund of £147.95. This applies to anyone who has bought the system between these dates, and also had the Green Deal / EPC assessment carried out by Easy EPC
 


“Easy EPC has been providing GDA’s and EPC’s for over seven years and has already helped thousands of homeowners across the country,” explained Graham Temple on behalf of Mitsubishi Electric. “They offer a national coverage, and charge a competitive rate of £147.95 for both GDA and EPC assessments regardless of the size of building or its location.

Applications require documentary evidence of purchase of the Ecodan and cylinder package from Mitsubishi Electric and EPC/Green Deal assessment from Easy EPC, and both must be within the promotional period and for the same property.

To apply for this promotion a simple application form needs to be completed, this can be downloaded from the Mitsubishi Electric heating website and is located in the homeowners section.

For further details visit the ‘For Homeowners’ section of the Ecodan website here

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UK:  The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has announced details of a series of free one-day training courses, designed to help potential heat pump customers – such as businesses, developers and housing providers - understand how heat pumps can deliver lower energy costs, greater comfort and better buildings.

The courses are NOT designed for installers or consultants, but to give potential heat pump customers in both the domestic and non-domestic sectors the chance to learn more about why heat pumps make sense, build their technical knowledge and understand the financing of heat pumps including unlocking the Renewable Heat Incentive.

The roadshows will be held on:

  • Tuesday 16 June – London (non-domestic sector)
  • Thursday 18 June – London (domestic sector)
  • Tuesday 23 June – Glasgow (both)
  • Wednesday 24 June – Newcastle (both)
  • Wednesday 1 July – Exeter (both)
  • Thursday 2 July – Cardiff (both)
  • Tuesday 7 July – Manchester (both)
  • Wednesday 8 July – Birmingham (both)

Places can be booked online at www.deccheatpumptraining2015.eventbrite.co.uk or by calling 020 8469 1333.

It is understood that a further event looking specifically at opportunities for water source heat pumps will be announced shortly.

 

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UK: The Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) has appointed SummitSkills to lead a new national forum that will address best practice and quality assurance of renewable heat training.

Designed to enhance the skills infrastructure underpinning the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (DRHI), the forum will comprise awarding organisations, MCS/installer representatives, industry bodies, qualifications regulators and training providers, among others.

Renewable sources eligible under the DRHI include biomass only boilers, biomass pellet stoves, air source and ground source heat pumps and flat plate and evacuated tube solar thermal panelsSummitSkills lead, will bring together a series of core objectives set for the group which includes encouraging standardisation of training materials and courses; introducing ‘train the trainer’ and ‘master trainer’ resources; driving continuous improvement and developing a quality assurance process for renewable heat training.

In addition to establishing the training forum, SummitSkills has also been commissioned to assess how renewable heat installer training might be affected by recently proposed changes to the qualifications and credit framework. The work will help to ensure any potential implications are identified and addressed at an early stage.

Nigel Hollett, general manager of SummitSkills said: “We’re delighted to be carrying out this important project to generate long-term sustainability of the renewable heat skills and training market.

“By carrying out this work we can help to ensure that standards are established and the quality of training available is maintained, to deliver a competent renewable heat workforce to meet DRHI demand.”

For more information please contact SummitSkills on 020 7313 4890.

 

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UK:  The Department of Energy and Climate Chnage (DECC) has announced its intention to amend the Domestic renewable heat incentive (dRHI) regulations to include high temperature air source heat pumps.
 
High temperature heat pumps are a development of existing air source heat pump technology that can operate at temperatures as high as 80 degrees celcius, suitable for use in properties where it is not appropriate to change radiators or use under-floor heating.
 
Once the regulation comes into force which is expected spring 2015, high temperature heat pumps will be eligible for the domestic RHI, as long as the product and installation meet all other scheme requirements, including the minimum efficiency levels represented by a Seasonal Performance Factor of 2.5. Anyone who has a high temperature heat pump that is currently not eligible (i.e. it was installed before these regulations come into force) will be able to apply for the domestic RHI from the date the regulations come into force.
 
Applicants will only have a short window to apply for the RHI, as the deadline for application will still be 12 months from your systems commissioning date, with no extension for “legacy” installations.
 
To see all of the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive: Changes to Eligibility Click here
 
The draft regulations are subject to parliamentary process and approval.
 

The domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) is the world’s first long-term financial support programme for renewable heat, offering homeowners payments to offset the cost of installing low carbon systems in their properties.

The scheme is open to everyone – home owners, social and private landlords, and people who build their own homes. It is available to households both on and off the gas grid.

 

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UK:  Mitsubishi Electric has launched the next generation of its award winning Ecodan air source heat pump range, with a host of new developments, one of which is the use of a plate heat exchanger in a domestic cylinder and patented Scale-Stop technology to remove the risk of limescale build-up.

The launch comes as the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) moves from its legacy stage into supporting new market growth, with the company developing the advanced range is response to the growing need for renewable heating in the UK.

Ecodan was the first inverter-driven air source heat pump in the UK to receive MCS (Micro Certification Scheme) certification and the first UK-manufactured unit to receive the prestigious Eco Label.  It is also the only air source heat pump that have received the Noise Abatement Society’s ‘Quiet Mark’ and the first to offer intelligent room sensing as standard.

Mitsubishi Electric has invested heavily in R&D facilities at its UK manufacturing plant in Livingston to focus on the experience of the homeowner, simplifying installation and maintenance, and making monitoring even easier:

Mitsubishi Electric reshapes air source heat pump market

The next generation – the FTC5 range, which is available from January 2015, includes a complete new range of cylinders which focus on improvements in heat loss performance; hot water recovery efficiency and time; and ease of installation and use.

All ten of the new cylinders dispense with the traditional internal coil method of water heating and instead use an external plate heat exchanger which increases hot water heat up efficiency by 17 per cent over previous models.

The FTC5 range offers three different options for homeowners:

  • The standard level which is pre-installed at the factory, offering remote energy monitoring using partial estimation of energy use;
  • Level Two which includes the addition of an electric meter; and
  • Level Three which adds a Metering and Monitoring Service Package (MMSP) heat meter, enabling homeowners to receive an additional RHI payment of £230 per year for seven years..

Plate heat exchangers use forced convection to heat the water cylinder, rather than the natural convection of a coil and this increases the Delta T, meaning that the water heats up more quickly and recovers temperature quicker when some hot water is used.

Other initiatives included in the launch include:

  • A patented cold inlet diffuser for all of the Pre-plumbed cylinders, which ensures reduced mixing of cold inlet water with stratified hot water.
  • A new titanium immersion heater which sets a new standard for operational life, even in the hardest or most aggressive water conditions. 

“We expect the heat pump market to continue to grow steadily through a combination of the RHI and in answer to the increasing costs of oil and LPG”, explains John Kellett, General Manager of the company’s heating systems. “We have prepared this new range to ensure that Ecodan is ready to answer that growing need”.

Founded in 1921, Mitsubishi Electric is a global, market leading, environmental technologies manufacturer, producing an advanced range of heating, air conditioning and ventilation equipment. The company realises that ensuring the right solutions are selected for each individual building, requires collaboration by all involved. Mitsubishi Electric has therefore changed the way it does business to ensure engagement with all involved in delivering sustainable buildings so that together, we can make a world of difference.

 

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UK:  The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has ruled that the government's TV advertising campaign promoting the “green deal” scheme misled householders, implying that energy savings were guaranteed.

The ASA ruled that the TV ad failed to make it clear that consumers could be charged an assessment fee, and that the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) failed to provide sufficient evidence that average property prices had increased by between 14% –38% in some areas under the initiative.

The ad also claimed that savings that could be made, could also increase property prices following "green'" home improvements.

Of 10 complaints made by Crystal Home Improvements, six were upheld by the ASA, including a claim that TV presenter Oliver Heath's featured in the ad, had his annual gas and electricity bills drop from £2,500 to £850 a year.

DECC defending the ad, said they did not say all the upfront costs would be met by a green deal finance plan, but said “some” of the costs might be paid for over time, and they did not suggest a consumer was guaranteed to make a net saving of money under the green deal but encouraged them to find out more.

Responding to the complaint about Heath’s energy bills, DECC said they had since confirmed that the figures were based on savings under his own eco-build initiative but they had no reason to believe that the claim was not an accurate reflection of what Heath had said at the time of publication.

The ASA concluded the ad claimed that “the money that we are saving more than covers any repayments for having the work done” and “lets you pay for some of the upfront costs of the work over time, and is repaid using the savings you can expect to make” would lead consumers to understand that they would save under the deal.

But it said: “Although we understood the first year’s instalment payments could not exceed the first year’s savings and any interest payable on repayments would be at a fixed rate for the whole repayment period, Decc could not guarantee that green deal repayments would exceed savings.

“Saving calculations were based on what Decc would expect a typical household to save as a result of building improvements and the assumption that energy bills would rise in line with inflation.

“Because we considered the claims implied that savings were guaranteed, we concluded the ad was misleading.”

ASA said of the the claims about Heath’s energy savings “We considered consumers would interpret the claim to be a testimonial, describing the actual savings made by Oliver Heath as a green deal customer and representing a likely example of savings under the green deal.

“Because the evidence was not sufficient to substantiate the claim, and Oliver Heath did not make the savings as a green deal customer as implied by the ad, we concluded the ad was misleading.”

It also found Decc did not provide correct evidence to substantiate its claim that property prices under the green deal had increased on average by 14%, and by 38% in some areas.

The ASA said: “We told Decc to ensure they held sufficient evidence for claims made in marketing communications, including saving claims, their ads did not misleadingly imply savings were guaranteed and that ads did not misleadingly give the impression that green deal assessments were impartial or give the impression of being a green deal testimonial when they related to other schemes or work.”

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UK:  Mitsubushi Electric have released a new brochure to highlight the benefits of using a renewable Ecodan air source heat pump in a hybrid situation, alongside an existing oil, gas or LPG boiler.

The brochure provides details on how hybrid systems can qualify for the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) and includes information on typical set ups and real-life case studies.

“Adding an Ecodan to an existing traditional heating system enables homeowners to maximise energy efficiency, comfort levels and reliability”, explains John Kellett, General Manager for the company’s Heating Systems Division. “It offers them the best of both worlds to provide total peace of mind”.

A hybrid or bivalent system allows the heat pump to deliver the majority of the heating efficiently throughout the year, and call on the traditional boiler to provide the peak output if outdoor conditions fall below a point where heating in this way becomes more cost effective. 

The Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) predicts that by 2030 approximately 26% of the UK’s heating energy output will be met by air source heat pumps alone, and as much as 56% will be met by hybrid systems.

Mitsubishi Electric has developed the Ecodan range to operate as a hybrid system, allowing homeowners to upgrade their traditional heating system by installing and running a heat pump alongside it.

The advanced control system inherent in all new Ecodan systems carefully controls which system to operate to maximise efficiency at any time of the year.  Including a heat meter will also enable Ofgem to know exactly how much heat is being produced by the renewable heat pump to help with RHI calculations.

“Interest in renewable heating continues to grow as the price of oil and gas keeps on rising, so adding Ecodan as a hybrid solution can make a lot of sense, especially when you factor in seven years of regular RHI payments”, adds Kellett.

To download the brochure, click here. 

Mitsubishi Electric have also developed an Ecodan Selection Tool mobile app that allows you to calculate saving on energy bills when installing ground or water source heat pumps - what the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) will mean for the homeowner and the capital equipment pay back period - To download the Ecodan App - click here. 

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UK:  The Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) scheme, which promotes and encourages homeowners to install renewable energy technologies is being exploited by so called "e-cowboys" offering installations of technologies not covered under the RHI scheme, claims Mike Stephenson, director, at H2ecO in Dorset.

The scheme which offers homeowners payments to offset the cost of installing low carbon systems in their properties is open to - homeowners, social and private landlords, self-builders and households both on and off the gas grid.

Since the launch there have been reports that some rogue traders have been installing unsuitable systems and claiming to be Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) accredited installers, resulting also in some customers being overcharged.

Heat pump manufacturers such as the likes Daikin, Panasonic and other top brands issue accreditations to installers that have passed extensive training and homeowners are advised to visit there websites for a list of approved installers. 

To ensure customers are using a qualified tradesperson and products you can find a list of accredited installers and products on the MSC Website - http://www.microgenerationcertification.org/ or by clicking on the the links below.

The domestic renewable heat incentive (RHI) is the world's first long-term financial support programme for renewable heat and launched by the Department of Energy and Climate Change in April.

To read more about the RHI, click below: 

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UK:  DECC yesterday launched a new calculator tool for householders to estimate their likely RHI payments.

The new Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) calculator is available in England, Scotland and Wales, and will show users instantly how much money they can expect to earn through the subsidy scheme, which launched earlier this year for the domestic market.

"Renewable technology is helping thousands of people keep their homes warm and reduce their energy bills at the same time, not to mention reducing their carbon footprint," said Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Climate Change, Amber Rudd MP in a statement.

"The Domestic RHI helps households offset the cost of installing renewable heating systems. From today, by entering just a few simple details into this calculator, people can now instantly see how much they could be paid through the scheme."

The calculator has been welcomed by the renewable heat industry as it will help installers convince potential customers of the financial benefits of installing biomass boilers, heat pumps, or solar thermal systems.

DECC RHI CALCULATOR

To learn more about the Domestic and Non Domestic RHI, click the links below. 

 

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