Biomass Heating and Boilers

Renewable Heat Premium Payment

In addition to the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), the government has also announced a grant for renewable heating technologies specifically targeted to domestic customers called the Renewable Heat Premium Payment (RHPP).

The UK Government has already committed that 15% of all energy consumed will come from renewable sources by 2020. To encourage the uptake of renewable heat systems they have introduced the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI).

In the first phase, RHI support will be targeted in the non-domestic sectors, at the big heat users - the industrial, business and public sector. The second phase, which expands support to the domestic sector, does not come into affect until the latter part of 2012.

In June of 2011, the Department of Energy and Climate Change announced further details of the RHPP; a fund to help domestic customers (particularly off-gas properties) with the cost of installing a renewable heating system. £15 million of support has been allocated to help up to 25,000 installations, with the scheme going live on the 1st of August.

Scheme Details:

• Both the product and the installer must be MCS accredited
• The Scheme will run between 1 August 2011 – 31 March 2012
• The property must be occupied (off-plan applications are not eligible)
• The property must be off the gas network (except for solar thermal installations)
• The property must be appropriately insulated
• The property must be owned by the applicant
• Once a voucher has been granted the applicant has a limited time to have a heat pump or biomass system commissioned

Grants to be paid for domestic installations:

Technology Grant Size Voucher Limit
Air Source Heat Pumps £850 5 Months
Ground Source Heat Pumps £1,250 6 Months
Biomass Boiler £950 6 Months

Q. What types of heating system qualify?
The RHPP will apply to ground source and air source heat pumps, biomass boilers and solar thermal systems. The heat must be being produced for a legitimate heating purpose like space heating or hot water production.

Q. Do new builds qualify for the scheme?
No. Buildings must be occupied to be eligible for the scheme; therefore off-plan applications are not permitted

Q. Does the RHPP only apply to off-gas properties?
Yes in the case of heat pumps and biomass. Solar Thermal applications can be made for properties on the gas network.

Q. Are there any insulation requirements?
Yes, the property must have roof and cavity wall insulation (where applicable).

Q. What will happen after the 31 March 2012?
Shortly after this date we expect the RHI phase 2 to begin, which will give long term support to the domestic sector.

Q. If I claim the RHPP grant can I still get the RHI in future?
Yes, the Government's intention is to offer ongoing financial support for the domestic sector under phase 2 of the RHI scheme (currently planned for introduction alongside the Green Deal in October 2012). People who take advantage of the RHPP will still be eligible for the full RHI.

Q. I'm an RSL, can I claim RHPP payments if I upgrade my housing stock with renewable heating systems?
£3m of the £15m has been set aside for registered social landlords (RSLs) to improve their housing stock. Details of how to apply for these funds will be announced at a later date. If the system is a new renewable heating system and is a communal or district scheme then the RHI payments can be applied for. If the upgrade involves fitting individual heating systems in each house then the RHI does not apply at this stage. This would be a domestic installation and qualify under the second phase.

Q. How can I apply?
The Premium Payment scheme will be run by the Energy Saving Trust and so they should be contacted regarding applications. Interested parties can call their helpline on 0800 512 012 or visit

Where can I find further information on the scheme?
For further information on the scheme please click here.

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