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The government is to offer subsidiaries of £5,000 from next April to help homeowners in England and Wales replace their gas boilers with low-carbon heat pumps
The new grants are part of a £450m boiler upgrade scheme which is included in the £3.9bn investment from the government for decarbonising heat and buildings.
This will fund the three-year investment programme and should pay for around 90,000 boiler replacements.
The grants mean that people choosing to install a heat pump will pay a similar amount as if they were installing a traditional gas boiler.
The plans are designed to significantly reduce the UK’s dependency on fossil fuels and exposure to global price spikes, while supporting up to 240,000 jobs in the manufacturing sector in the UK by 2035.
The government has also announced that they will work together with the industry to reduce the price of heat pumps with the aim of having heat pumps costing the same to buy and run as fossil fuel boilers by 2030 with reductions to the cost of between a quarter and a half before 2025.
This will support the government’s target for all heating systems installed in UK homes to be electricity based by 2035.
The government has confirmed that no-one will be ‘forced’ to remove their existing boilers but the transition over the next 14 years will see UK households and businesses move away from fossil fuel boilers.
Kwasi Kwarteng, business and energy secretary said: ‘Recent volatile global gas prices have highlighted the need to double down on our efforts to reduce Britain’s reliance on fossil fuels and move away from gas boilers over the coming decade to protect consumers in long term.
‘As the technology improves and costs plummet over the next decade, we expect low carbon heating systems will become the obvious, affordable choice for consumers. Through our new grant scheme, we will ensure people are able to choose a more efficient alternative in the meantime.’
To ensure that electric heat pumps will be no more expensive to run than gas boilers, the government has announced that it will reduce the price of electricity over the next decade by shifting levies away from electricity to gas.
A call for evidence is expected to be published with decisions made in 2022.
In order to grow the market for electric heat pump manufacturing in the UK, the government has announced a £60m heat pump ready innovation programme as part of the £1bn net zero innovation portfolio.
The scheme aims to provide funding which will aim to drive technological innovation which will make the systems ‘smaller, easier to install, and cheaper to run over the coming years’.
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