Active campaign topics include :

The HPF is highly active on behalf of members through engagement with politicians, government departments, civil servants, regulators, industry colleagues and community groups.

HPF supports the Fair Heat Deal

The Heat Pump Federation has joined forces with leading businesses and civil society organisations to urge the Government to introduce a Fair Heat Deal to make moving from fossil fuel boilers to clean heat pumps attractive for all. The Deal would provide free heat pumps and insulation for the fuel poor. For everyone else it would equalise the cost of a heat pump and a fossil fuel boiler and ensure running a heat pump is always cheaper. Click on the link for further information on the proposed Fair Heat Deal.

Petition to Reduce Social & Environmental Levies on Electricity to Improve the Economics of Heat Pump Installations

HPF is teaming up with other key influencers in the heat pump sector to petition Government to reduce the social and environmental levies on electricity to support the mass roll out of heat pump installations across the UK.

The UK imposes social and environmental levies of 23% on electricity, but less than 2% on gas. These levies are actively working against the decarbonisation of heat in the UK. Government needs to migrate the levies from electricity to gas to allow people to run heat pumps with a financial advantage. As things stand, it is cheaper, in many instances, to use polluting fossil fuels. Improving the financial case for homeowners and landlords to adopt heat pump technologies will mitigate against climate change, improve urban air-quality, and will encourage the long-term supply chain for heat pumps. Using heat pumps to harvest on-shore thermal resources reduces fossil fuel imports, so contributing to both fuel security and to the UK’s balance of payments.

The UK cannot hope to achieve 600,000 heat pump installations a year by 2028 until it reduces the artificially inflated cost of increasingly clean electricity. To support the case, sign the petition by clicking here and adding your signature.

Transitional funding support

The closure of the Non-Domestic RHI on 31st March this year and of the Domestic RHI on 31st March 2022 significantly reduces the financial assistance on offer to those wanting to choose a decarbonised future. The proposed Clean Heat Grant is aimed at carrying the domestic residential market through to a wholly regulatory future, but will not support the infrastructural benefits of ground- and water-source heat pumps in its present format, so restricting consumer choice. The demise of the NDRHI currently leaves a black hole which must be filled as quickly as possible. Some form of continuing and meaningful transitional support will be required to bridge the policy gap until regulation and future funding solutions provide the opportunity to move away from taxpayer support completely.

Heat networks & zoning

Government's expectation is for 20% of UK homes to be served by heat networks by 2050. Increasingly, it's clear that many of these networks will be driven by heat pumps, including both 4th and 5th generation architectures. The concept of zoning for heat (potentially around energy resources such as waste heat, industrial plant or rivers) is one of the policy building blocks which will support network development. This will require a significant shift in a whole range of current policy and regulation. The HPF will be supporting its active heat networks members and will collaborate with all other interested industry parties to effect this change.

SAP & Building Regulations

As demonstrated by CarbonWatch, the current versions of SAP and RdSAP (2012) do not reflect the significant decarbonisation of grid electricity over the last decade, and therefore penalise the carbon outcomes of heat pump deployment, whilst over-rewarding solar photovoltaic and other low carbon generation technologies. The proposals set out in the Future Home Standard and the Interim Uplift to Part L of Building Regulations will start to address this, but implementation is likely to be delayed until mid-2022. The HPF will continue to work with the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) to pursue the earliest possible date for bringing forwards this legislation.

Future Home Standard and Interim Uplift to Part L of Building Regulations

The published MHCLG response to the consultation on the Future Homes Standard and Interim Uplift to Part L of Building Regulations contained many elements previously campaigned for by the heat pump trade bodies and by the industry as a whole. In particular, mandating for no new homes to be built with fossil fuel heating beyond 2025, and allowing local planning authorities (LPAs) to retain powers to set local energy efficiency standards for new homes, are welcome. Also to be applauded under the Interim Uplift, all new homes will be expected to produce 31% less CO2 emissions compared to current standards and guidance will be introduced to encourage new heating systems to be designed to operate at a flowrate temperature of 55°C or lower.

Planning policy and Permitted Development Rights

Several of the core planning policy initiatives required to support electrification of heat are set out above, particularly the freedom retained by LPAs to set more demanding local energy and carbon requirements, which many authorities are already making excellent use of. However, Permitted Development Rights (PDR) legislation is now out of kilter with both technological development and the demands and aspirations of local communities and planners. The HPF will work with all interested parties to encourage a reform of PDR to better reflect the requirements of Net Zero 2050 and the positions that LPAs are already taking.

Microgeneration Certification Scheme, Standards, Training & best practice development

The HPF already works closely with MCS and wants to see this essential pillar of consumer protection mandated across all domestic heat pump deployments, both new build and retrofit. Rapid expansion of the heat pump sector to meet the 10-Point-Plan target of 600,000 installations per annum by 2028 will require equivalent expansion of the training programmes for the installers, drillers and other practitioners of the future. This will require industry-wide collaboration which is already underway. The HPF has been instrumental in securing government funding for revisions to CIBSE Technical Memorandum 51 and is active in all other standards development initiatives. This includes activities to increase awareness amongst school leavers that a career in the heat sector is both sustainable in all senses, and is smart & "connected", as future generations expect all facets of life to be - Digital, not Dirty!

Community & public awareness

Understanding amongst the public of the damage done by the burning of fossil fuels remains poor, but is developing. David Attenborough, Greta Thunberg and Extinction Rebellion have all added massive impetus to the traditional voices of Green Peace and the World Wildlife Fund. The HPF is supporting local community groups with presentations and support to build the "pull" of public demand for decarbonisation through electrification.

Air quality

For many urban communities and local authorities, air quality is as important as decarbonisation. Costs to the NHS and premature death rates from illnesses related to pollution are both unacceptably high. The electrification of transport enjoys the limelight, but 25% of urban air pollution is caused by the burning of fossil fuels for heat; carbon emissions contribute to climate change, but its NOx, SOx and particulates which damage health.

Future funding & the benefits of decarbonisation

This is an enormous policy area incorporating affordability, accessibility, fairness and the fight against fuel poverty. The heat pump sector needs to educate, participate, lead and collaborate. In doing so, and in succeeding to deliver heat pump technology at scale, the benefits to the UK are potentially enormous, measured in energy cost reduction, job creation, up-skilling, reduced reliance on fuel imports, improved balance of payments and fuel security.

Future funding will continue to come from government for those who cannot afford our technology themselves and for buildings in the public sector where both central and local government can lead by example. Programmes will include further phases of the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme, the Home Upgrade Grant, the Green Homes Grant, the Green Heat Networks Fund and specific social housing funding.

Government can also apply other financial levers by reforming :

  • VAT (reduced or zero-rating low emissions technologies)
  • Social & environmental levies on electricity & gas (currently more than 23% of the cost of electricity but less that 2% of the cost of gas)
  • Council Tax, commercial rates, stamp duty

The private and commercial financial sector contributions will come from :

  • realising the value of flexibility (time-of-use tariffs combined with thermal storage, both conventional and innovative phase-change materials)
  • creative funding instruments (potentially lead by the work of the Green Finance Institute)
  • stronger Demand Side Response and Management (DSR/DSM)
  • recognition of, and investment in, ground- and water-source infrastructure as just that, infrastructure of national value

Policy priorities will vary over time depending upon external forces and legislative windows, but the agenda is absolutely packed and the HPF and its members will be playing an active part in all areas.