UK Launches Renewable Heat Incentive

UK households are set to reap big rewards under a new feed-in tariff scheme for energy generated by solar thermal panels, biomass boilers and heat pumps.
The new Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) will pay homeowners the equivalent of AU$0.12c/kWh for air-to-water sourced heat pumps, AUS0.20/kWh for recycled biomass pellet boilers, AU$0.30/kWh for ground and water-sourced heat pumps, and a minimum of AU$0.31c/kWh for homes with installed flat plate and evacuated tube solar hot water systems.
The scheme is designed to assist in the uptake of renewable energy systems in the UK, cut carbon emissions and help drive down the cost of electricity bills for working families. Only technologies that help Great Britain meet its European Union renewable energy target obligations will be eligible under the new tariff arrangements.
“The Coalition is committed to helping hardworking families with the cost of living. Investing for the long term in new renewable heat technologies will mean cleaner energy and cheaper bills. So this package of measures is a big step forward in our drive to get innovative renewable heating kit in our homes,” said UK Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker.
The RHI is being hailed as a world first by parent agency, the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC). The DECC says lessons learned from Renewable Heat Premium Payment – a one-off payment to assist households with the cost of installing renewable energy systems – has helped the DECC design a scheme in which people “can now invest in a range of exciting heating technologies knowing how much the tariff will be for different renewable heat technologies and benefit from the clean green heat produced.”
The RHI is open to households that have installed an eligible renewable heat technology since 2009. Payments will be made quarterly for seven years – the expected payback time of a renewable heating system, taking into account the falling cost of solar thermal and heat pump technologies.