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28 Mar 2012 03:03:36

The Renewable Heat Premium Payment: phase two

Biomass boiler.
On 2 April 2012 the Energy Saving Trust will launch the pre-registration process for phase two of the Renewable Heat Premium Payment (RHPP) voucher scheme which, as confirmed by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), has risen from £10m to £25m in value. RHPP applications will be accepted from 1st May 2012.

The announcement of this launch was made at the same time as a proposed delay to the introduction of the domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), which may not now happen until the summer of 2013. The overall budget for RHPP and RHI from its 2011 commencement until March 2015 is set at £864m. As DECC have stated that underspend in one year cannot be carried into future years there are concerns about the success of RHPP; NAPIT's managing director of standards David Cowburn explains further.

"The first phase of RHPP failed to utilise the available budget, and much of this is because of a lack of confidence that installations made now will be eligible for domestic RHI when it is finally introduced. Confirmation that this proposal will not be ditched by DECC is key to the uptake of the new RHPP and should be addressed with some urgency."

During the first phase, 6,412 RHPP vouchers worth just under £5m were issued to the domestic sector whilst 1,100 social housing installations attracted just over £4m of the funding by March 2012. Whilst phase two of the voucher scheme is capped at £7m, DECC has designated £8m for community grants and a further £10m to social housing projects.

UK households reliant on oil, LPG or electric heating systems can benefit through RHPP for installations of renewable energy technologies such as biomass boilers, heat pumps or solar panels which can reduce both carbon footprints and heating expenditure.

Vouchers still incorporate the same technologies and are worth the same. Homes without mains gas heating installing a ground source heat pump can apply to the Energy Saving Trust for a £1,250 grant, a £950 grant to install a biomass boiler or £850 for air source heat pumps. All households can apply for a £300 grant for solar thermal hot water panel installations.

For further information on any aspect of the RHPP, please contact NAPIT.

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