Heat pump grant given £7,500 boost as uptake slow across England and Wales

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Countryfile: Guest about heat pumps and climate change

Starting from today, households will be able to receive extra help to install a heat pump as the Government increases their grant by 50 percent following criticism the rollout has been too slow.

This will provide families an extra £2,500 in support – on top of the £5,000 offered.

The Department for Energy Security and Net Zero (DESNZ) said it will mean the cost of installing a heat pump could be below that of the average gas boiler for some households.

The change, announced by Rishi Sunak last month as part of his “new approach to achieving net zero”, means the grant available under the Boiler Upgrade Scheme for households installing air source heat pumps will be increased from £5,000 to £7,500.

And ground source heat pump grants have risen from £6,000 to £7,500.

This came after the Government faced heavy criticism from the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) on its policies relating to heat pumps and phasing out the slow adoption of the low-carbon technology.

Read more Dad forced to insulate home with cardboard after heat pump left bills soaring

The NIC said that the current rate of heat pump installation is “not cutting the mustard”.

Around eight million buildings will need to switch from gas boilers, which currently heat around nine in 10 English properties, to cleaner alternatives by 2035 to meet the UK’s 2050 net zero target, the commission said.

It has also been revealed that the scheme’s budget is currently underspent and there is room for more grants, according to PA.

Greg Jackson, the founder of Octopus Energy – which has invested heavily in developing heat pumps – said: “We see enormous demand for heat pumps as they’re three or four times more energy efficient than gas boilers, and with these Government grants they’re affordable to install too.”

The Government also said it is setting £10million aside for its heat pump ready programme to support innovation and cut installation costs, alongside launching a new campaign to help people improve energy efficiency in their homes this winter.

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Energy Secretary Claire Coutinho said: “No one should have to choose between cutting costs and cutting emissions, our pragmatic approach means we can continue to deliver on our ambitious net zero targets without unfairly hitting the pockets of hardworking families.

“From today, for some households starting prices for heat pumps could now be below the average gas boiler, as we have increased the cash grant by 50 percent to £7,500 – making our scheme one of the most generous in Europe.

“This will help thousands of people across the country reduce their energy use and keep their homes warm.”

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