All new heating systems installed in UK homes from 2035 are to be low carbon, the Government has announced with Homeowners in England and Wales offered subsidies of £5,000 to help them replace old gas boilers with low-carbon heat pumps.
The plans announced include a £450 million Boiler Upgrade Scheme to help install low-carbon heating systems, part of more than £3.9 billion of new funding to decarbonise heat and buildings
The Government has also launched a £60 million innovation fund to make clean heat systems smaller and easier to install and cheaper to run.
This will significantly reduce the UK’s dependency on fossil fuels and exposure to global price spikes, whilst supporting up to 240,000 jobs across the UK by 2035 says the Government
The government and industry will also work together to help meet the aim of heat pumps costing the same to buy and run as fossil fuel boilers by 2030, with big cost reductions of between a quarter and a half by 2025 expected as the market expands and technology develops.
This will support the government’s new target for all new heating systems installed in UK homes by 2035 to be either using low-carbon technologies, such as electric heat pumps, or supporting new technologies like hydrogen-ready boilers, where we are confident we can supply clean, green fuel.
No-one will be forced to remove their existing fossil fuel boilers, with this transition of the next 14 years seeing the UK’s households gradually move away from fossil fuel boilers in an affordable, practical and fair way, enabling homeowners to easily make these green choices when the time comes to replace their old boiler
Business and Energy Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said:
Recent volatile global gas prices have highlighted the need to double down on our efforts to reduce Britain’s reliance on fossil fuels and move away from gas boilers over the coming decade to protect consumers in long term.
As the technology improves and costs plummet over the next decade, we expect low carbon heating systems will become the obvious, affordable choice for consumers. Through our new grant scheme, we will ensure people are able to choose a more efficient alternative in the meantime.
Matthew Fell, CBI Chief Policy Director, said:
“£5,000 heat pump grants will help get the ball rolling when it comes to decarbonising homes across the UK. The Government’s Heat and Buildings Strategy provides a golden opportunity for both the public and private sector to pick up the pace of progress to net zero.
“There’s no doubt that the scale of the challenge is considerable. These welcome measures – including the 2035 phase out of new gas boilers – will help consumers and business better prepare to change the way they heat their homes and buildings.
“Government must now support this valuable work with a clear delivery plan for consumers, businesses and local authorities. The time is now to accelerate low carbon heat and energy efficiency solutions, grow the number of green jobs across the UK, and further support the Government’s net zero ambitions”.
However Environmental Groups say that more needs to be spent. Friends of the Earth analysis points out the money will only subsidize 30,000 new heat pumps over a three-year period.
The government’s target is for 600,000 new heat pump installations per year by 2028.
Ed Miliband MP, Labour’s Shadow Business Secretary, responding to the Government’s Heat and Buildings Strategy, said:
“As millions of families face an energy and cost of living crisis, this is a meagre, unambitious and wholly inadequate response.
“Families up and down the country desperately needed Labour’s 10 year plan investing £6 billion a year for home insulation and zero carbon heating to cut bills by £400 per year, improve our energy security, create jobs and reduce carbon emissions.
“People can’t warm their homes with yet more of Boris Johnson’s hot air but that is all that is on offer.”