2016 saw fewer people benefit from the Renewable Heat Incentive, as budgets were cut and there was less support for those hoping to install alternative heating sources. However, in somewhat of a U-turn, the Government have announced that rates will now increase by 33%.
April 2016 saw changes introduced including a budget cap (meaning that once the cap had been reached, the Government would pay no more money out for that technology in that quarter). The scheme has now been further reformed after a long consultation period.
What is the RHI?
The Renewable Heat Incentive is a government scheme encouraging the installation of renewable energy sources for domestic or commercial properties to produce their own heating or hot water. It promotes low-carbon technologies with gradual payback from the Government for people who install initially expensive renewable technologies.
What technologies are eligible for RHI payments?
How have RHI tariffs changed?
- The tariffs for new ASHPs and GSHPs will be increased to 10.02 pence per kilowatthour (p/kWh) and 19.55p/kWh respectively.
- The tariff for new biomass installations will be increased to 6.44p/kWh, the level available between October and December 2015, adjusted for inflation.
- There was talk earlier in the year of removing support for solar thermal from the domestic scheme. However, following opposition to this change, solar thermal will continue to be included. The tariff will remain at the current level of 19.74p/kWh and there will be no other changes to terms of support for solar thermal systems.
The other main changes to the RHI are:
- All new ASHPs and GSHPs applying for support under the scheme must have electricity metering to monitor their heating system. Payments will still be made on the basis of the deemed heating requirements of the property, except for second homes and where a renewable heating system is installed alongside another heating system, in which cases payments will still be made depending on heat metering.
- GSHPs making use of a shared ground loop will only be eligible for the non domestic scheme.
- Heat demand limits will be introduced, to limit the level of annual heat demand in respect of which any household can receive support. The heat demand limits will be set at 20,000kWh for ASHPs, 25,000kWh for biomass boilers and stoves and 30,000kWh for GSHPs. However, this will not disqualify properties with higher heat demands from applying to the scheme. There will be no heat demand limit for solar thermal
You can find all the details here.