The Heat Pump Association (HPA) has welcomed the government’s announcement that the UK will become the first major nation to commit to reaching a net zero carbon emissions target by 2050.
However, the HPA also warns that clear policy and a widespread adoption of ultra low-carbon heating systems are urgently required in order for the target to stand a realistic chance of being met.
The UK already has a 2050 target – to reduce emissions by 80%, which was agreed by MPs under the Climate Change Act in 2008, but it will now be amended to the new, much tougher goal that will demand a big move away from carbon-based heating systems. Despite acknowledging in the past that a major shift to solely heat pumps would be impractical, the HPA is calling on the government to promote wider support for heat pumps, as a technology that is widely understood, and is available now. This means the work towards hitting this new target can begin immediately, without the need to develop new technology.
Graham Wright, chairman of the HPA, said, “We are extremely encouraged by the government’s decision to cut the UK’s emissions to almost zero by 2050, but to achieve this government and industry, collectively, must not ‘take our foot off the gas’. What industry needs now are clear signals, with explicit policy and well communicated pathways to low-carbon heating such as heat pumps.”
Wright continued, “The industry needs to prepare for increased production and training with a degree of certainty that is only achievable by clear policy and distinct time frames. The technology is widely available, but more structured training is needed to implement it. The HPA is ready to help government raise awareness among installers and customers and is already planning to set up its own training courses in the near future.”