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UK Government announces six-month extension to Non-Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive projects

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The UK is giving even more breathing room to companies taking advantage of the Non-Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (NDRHI) scheme, with a six-month extension being granted to certain projects. 

The six-month extension will allow companies extra time to apply for the NDRHI scheme, as well as receive certification. This was a major worry of many in the industry, as the Covid-19 pandemic had led to inevitable delays in getting projects off the ground. Now, with a six-month extension, companies will be able to apply for accreditation until September 30, 2021. 

This is the second major change to the NDRHI scheme to be announced due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, with the UK Government having already approved a 14-month extension for the scheme. However, this change was especially important to the Heat Pump Federation, which noted that it was pleased that the Government “acknowledged the need for a six-month commissioning extension of the non-domestic RHI scheme, in order to rectify the damage to the sector caused by COVID-19.”

In a statement, Bean Beanland, director of growth & external affairs at the Heat Pump Federation commented, “Whilst the details are yet to be worked through, the potential for applicants to obtain a six-month commissioning extension beyond March 31, 2021, is very positive and should allow a significant number of heat pump projects, put on hold given the uncertain future of the RHI,  to be brought back to life. 

“The additional six months will also provide time for the heat pump industry to react to the content of BEIS’s Heat & Buildings Strategy that is due to be published in the autumn. This, together with the outputs from the new BEIS Electrification of Heat Task Group, should provide the basis for a long-term strategic approach to the provision of decarbonised heating and cooling.”

“The HPF and GSHPA are committed to working constructively with Government to deliver the lowest emissions heating and cooling solutions for all non-domestic buildings. We wish to work closely with Government to refine the mechanism for investing the £1Bn Fund into the decarbonisation of public buildings, as part of the COVID-19 green recovery. If the investment window for this Fund can be set to reasonably reflect existing public procurement processes and the time taken to position, sell and build-out high quality heat pump projects, the value to the taxpayer, in pursuit of Net Zero 2050, could be tremendous.”

While the NDRHI scheme cover non-domestic properties, there is some good news for the industry on the domestic front. That’s because heat pumps will be covered by the Green Homes Grant Scheme, which provides most homeowners in England with up to £5,000 in vouchers to spend on energy efficiency improvements.

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