Air source heat pumps have just been added to the list of eligible technologies under the non-domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), a scheme originally launched in November 2011. Organisations (paying business rates), charities and landlords looking to install a shared communal or district heating scheme can apply to receive the payments as an incentive aimed at encouraging the adoption of renewable heat in place of fossil fuel alternatives.
Air source heat pump installations commissioned after 4th December 2013 will become eligible when this new addition to the RHI is approved by parliament in the new year. The tariff rate is 2.5 pence per kWh generated which certainly makes air source heat pumps an even more attractive option compared to oil and LPG boilers. There is great potential to reduce running costs compared to these fossil fuels and this new tariff means that from a financial perspective it is worth considering air source in place of gas boilers.
Other technologies already included in the non-domestic RHI include biomass boilers, ground source heat pumps and solar thermal panels. Payments are made quarterly over 20 years.
Ecoliving has installed single property, communal and district heating systems qualifying for the RHI since its introduction in 2011. Responding to the announcement, Ecoliving director, Mark Henderson, said, "We welcome the addition of air source to the non-domestic RHI. The Ecoliving approach is multi technology because we believe that the most appropriate technology should be specified for the specific requirements of the property and air source is another efficient solution for heating commercial properties."