The government’s stance on renewable heat energy since the General Election has been very unclear, and the continuation of the Renewable heat Incentive (RHI), a major policy supporting this industry, has hung in the balance. The Secretary emphasised that heat is essential to meeting government 2020 targets in front of the Energy and Climate Change committee in Parliament. See this article.
Rudd said that the prospect of the UK getting just 11.5% of energy from renewables by 2020 without further action, first revealed in a leaked letter on Monday, was accurate. The gap would have to be addressed by the Department for Transport and by her department doing more on heat, she said. “It’s my aim we should meet the 2020 target. I recognise we don’t have the right policies, particularly in transport and heat, but we have four to five years and I remain committed to making the target,” she told the energy and climate change committee.
The joint letter from the energy trade associations emphasises that the heat sector is critical to meeting our legally mandated 2020 targets, but also “to our carbon budgets and the long term decarbonisation of the UK’s energy system.”
The Renewable Energy Association reports that presently the UK is set to fall short of its heat targets. The letter emphasises that a coordinated approach is needed. A strategic heat policy would also consider energy efficiency in green building, housing standards, and network infrastructure.
The renewables heating industry looks forward to the confirmation of a policy framework in the Comprehensive Spending Review, expected on November 25th, that will continue to encourage low carbon businesses in the UK.
James Court, Head of Policy and External Affairs at the Renewable Energy Association said:
“A third of all UK carbon emissions originate from heat, and just about half of all UK energy is used for heating. Yet only 4.9% of our heat infrastructure is currently renewable and low carbon. The RHI has been hugely successful, and has encouraged 12,000 installations in schools, hotels, offices and businesses, and 43,000 installations in homes. The RHI needs a renewed budget to continue to incentivise renewable heat, so we can reach our 2020 renewable targets.”
Frank Aaskov, Policy Analyst at the Renewable Energy Association said:
“We are pleased to see Amber Rudd argue for the importance of renewable, low-carbon heat in front of the Environment & Climate Change Committee. Renewable heat is essential to meeting the Government’s 2020 targets, carbon budgets, and the long term decarbonisation of the UK’s energy system.
Collectively, we are calling for a strategic heat policy that includes the continuation of the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI)”
· Dr. Nina Skorupska, CEO of Renewable Energy Association
· Charlotte Morton, Chief Executive, Anaerobic Digestion and Bioresources Association
· Simon Lomax, Chairman, Ground Source Heat Pump Association
· Mike Nankivell, President, Heat Pump Association
· Dave Sowden, Chief Executive, Sustainable Energy Association
· Niall Stuart, Chief Executive, Scottish Renewables
· Dr. Howard Porter, Chief Executive, BEAMA