Biomass Boiler Grants are available with the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive Scheme

Do you use LPG or oil to heat your home or business?

Install a biomass boiler – Cut your heating bills in half and claim Renewable Heat Incentive tariff payments for seven years with Biomass Boiler Grants

Biomass Boiler Grants are available now with the Renewable Heat Incentive Scheme

  • Cut your heating bills in half with biomass
  • Guaranteed RHI tariffs for up to 20 years
  • Protect yourself against rising energy bills
  • Biomass boiler grants have a payback of 3 – 6 years
  • Secure, sustainable, renewable energy
  • Get the best biomass deals from a local company
  • Limited funding – Don’t miss out – Apply today

Biomass Boilers and the Renewable Heat Incentive

Biomass boilers burn compacted wood pellets to create heat and are an eligible renewable heating technology in the Government’s Renewable Heat Incentive scheme, attracting biomass boiler grants. The Renewable Heat Incentive scheme makes tariff payments for 7 years to participants of Domestic RHI and 20 years to participants of Non-Domestic RHI for households and businesses who claim biomass boiler grants.

For domestic central heating systems, the cost of renewable biomass energy generated by a biomass boiler is roughly half the price of LPG and two thirds of the price of heating oil.  If you add in the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive tariff payments which can be claimed by installing a biomass boiler in a typical well insulated, four bedroom home you could save and earn £31,395* over 7 years.  Biomass boiler grants from the Government’s Renewable Heat Incentive are available now.

Biomass boilers and stoves - Cost in Pence per kWh for biomass heat energy
Biomass boilers and stoves - Annual Savings achieved by switching to biomass energy
Biomass boilers and stoves - Biomass CO2 emissions compared to other fuels

Biomass Boilers

Biomass boilers operate in a similar way to normal central heating boilers which use natural gas, LPG or heating oil in so far as biomass boilers burn fuel to create heat.  Biomass boilers burn carbon-based fuel in the form of wood pellets which generate heat to produce heating and hot water for your home or business.  The main difference with biomass boilers is down to the type of fuel they use.  Instead of piping gas or oil to your boiler, compacted wooden pellets are fed into the combustion chamber of a biomass boiler from an integrated hopper in the case of a domestic biomass boiler or automatically from a separate fuel store in the case of a commercial biomass boiler installation. When biomass compacted wood pellets are burned there is a small amount of ash waste (around 0.5% by weight of the original biomass fuel) but this can be used as a garden fertiliser.

A biomass boiler can generally be installed in place of a conventional domestic LPG or oil-fired boiler without the need for changing the existing pipework or central heating radiators.  A modern condensing biomass boiler operates at close to 100% efficiency which is better than most conventional gas, oil and LPG central heating boilers.

A modern biomass boiler is ideal for homes, farms and businesses which are not on the mains gas grid because it will be much cheaper to run than heating systems which use LPG, heating oil, coal or electricity. Burning biomass wooden pellets in a domestic biomass boiler costs around 4.3 pence per kilowatt hour (p/kWh) which makes them 50% cheaper than using LPG (at 8.6p/kWh) and over 30% cheaper than using heating oil (6.4p/kWh).

By installing a biomass boiler and claiming biomass boiler grants you will now receive Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive tariff payments of 12.2 pence per kilowatt hour of renewable heat energy generated and used which means that for a biomass boiler producing 25,000 kilowatt hours of renewable heat energy each year, the annual Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive tariff payment will be £3,050 or £21,350 over the 7 year Domestic RHI claim period.

Biomass boilers offer a mature, proven form of renewable heating technology having been used for decades in Austria, Finland and Denmark where there is an established source of sustainable biomass fuel. According to the Carbon Trust, installing a biomass boiler is one of the few “cost effective and practical ways to provide space heating and hot water from a low carbon source”. The Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive scheme is considered such an important part of the Government’s energy policy that the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) described Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive as “the first step in transforming the way we heat our homes”. Apply for biomass boiler grants today.

Biomass stoves provide a focal point to a room in the same way that traditional log fires do but without the smoke, dirt and carbon emissions.  Biomass stoves which use biomass wood pellet fuel only and have an integrated back boiler to produce hot water will qualify for Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive tariff payments of 12.2 pence per kilowatt hour of renewable heat energy generated and used. Biomass stoves are often used in conjunction with another heating system as they are only normally intended to heat an individual room.  Biomass boiler grants are available for biomass boilers and biomass stoves.

The Energy Saving Trust estimates that a biomass stove with an energy output of 5 – 7 kilowatts should cost between £2,000 and £4,000 and they are ideal when modernising a small home which has no central heating system but does have an operational chimney. Biomass stoves with integrated back boilers operate in a similar way to traditional open fires fitted with a back boiler and are capable of providing all the heating and hot water for a small house.  A biomass stove which generates and uses 8,000 kilowatt hours of renewable heat energy each year would qualify for an annual Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive tariff payment of £976 or £6,832 over the 7 year Domestic RHI claim period.

Renewable Heat Incentive

The Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) is a Government initiative which offers financial incentives to householders, businesses and other organisations in England, Wales and Scotland to encourage the uptake of renewable heat technology.  The Government has set a target of 12% of heating being sourced from renewable energy by 2020 and biomass boiler grants should play a large part in helping to achieve that part of Government policy.

Participants in the RHI scheme will receive quarterly tariff payments for 7 years in respect of the Domestic RHI and 20 years in respect of the Non-Domestic RHI for installing one of the approved renewable heating systems included in the RHI scheme.

The RHI is the first scheme of its type in the world in providing such long term financial incentives and the Department of Energy and Climate Change referred to it as “the first step in transforming the way we heat our homes” and businesses.

Phase 1 of the Renewable Heat Incentive is the Non-Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive and it provides financial incentives in the form of biomass boiler grants to commercial, public sector and ‘not-for-profit’ organisations to install renewable heat generators or to produce bio-methane.  The Non-Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive makes tariff payments to qualifying organisations for 20 years.
Non-domestic RHI tariff payments can be claimed by commercial organisations as well as schools, hospitals and communities. Community heating projects include schemes where a group of householders come together to install a renewable heating system from which they all benefit by sharing the renewable energy it generates and the Non-Domestic RHI income it attracts.

Renewable heating systems which attract Renewable Heat Incentive tariff payments under the Non-Domestic RHI scheme include solid biomass, ground source heat pumps, air source heat pumps, geothermal, solar thermal, bio-gas combustion and combined heat and power systems (CHP).

Phase 2 of the RHI is the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive and it was introduced in April 2014 to provide biomass boiler grants to householders. The Domestic RHI scheme pays quarterly tariffs for 7 years to owner occupiers, private landlords, social housing, third-party owners of domestic heating systems and those who self-build a new home, who install an eligible renewable heating system. Renewable heating systems which attract Domestic RHI tariffs include biomass boiler, biomass stove, solar thermal water heating systems, ground source heat pumps and air source heat pumps.   Domestic RHI tariffs are paid to eligible applicants every three months for seven years.

Although the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive biomass boiler grants are available to all qualifying households, businesses and other organisations it is primarily aimed at owners of those premises which are ‘off mains gas-grid’ as they are the ones with most to gain by switching to renewable energy heating systems.  There are approximately 4 million households in the UK which do not have access to mains gas and the Domestic RHI scheme has a target of supporting up to 750,000 domestic renewable heat installations by 2020.

Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive tariff payments for eligible renewable energy heating systems are:

Renewable Heating Technology Domestic RHI Tariff
Air Source Heat Pump 7.3p /kWh
Biomass Boiler and Stove 12.2p /kWh
Ground Source Heat Pump 18.2p /kWh
Biomass Boiler and Stove 19.2p /kWh

 

As an example, a house with an annual heat demand of 25,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) will attract a Domestic RHI tariff payment of £3,050 per year for installing a biomass boiler, which amounts to £21,350 over the 7 year period of the RHI claim.  The annual Domestic RHI payment in this example is calculated as 25,000kWh x 12.2p = £3,050. A property with this level of heat demand would also save around £1,435 per year in heating bills by switching from LPG to biomass.

Degression

Although the basic Renewable Heat Incentive tariff rates are fixed once you have been accepted into the scheme (although they will change in accordance with changes in the RPI each year), they may be changed for new applicants in order to keep the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme within its overall budget. This is referred to as degression and the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive tariff rate for biomass was reduced to 10.98 pence per kilowatt hour on the 1st January 2015.  Under degression, Renewable Heat Incentive tariff rates can be changed every three months, so it is important to check which rate will apply to your application when making a decision whether to install a biomass boiler.

Biomass fuel

Biomass fuel is a term used to describe all organic material which has been derived from living things but when used in the context of biomass energy it includes only plant-based material which can be burned to release biomass energy in the form of heat. With regard to biomass boilers and biomass stoves, the definition of biomass fuel is narrowed even more and generally refers to logs, wood chips, briquettes and high energy crops such as miscanthus, willow, rape & maize. Nevertheless, modern domestic biomass boilers are predominantly designed to use compacted wooden pellets because they provide a very convenient fuel with a high calorific value and very little ash residue when burnt.

Wood pellets which are used as biomass fuel in a biomass boiler or a biomass stove are generally made from 100% untreated sawdust and wood shavings which are compressed under high pressure into fairly uniformly sized small cylindrical shapes.

Biomass energy is carbon neutral because although burning biomass fuel does release carbon dioxide, the amount is limited to the amount of carbon dioxide which was absorbed by the plant or tree whilst it was alive and growing.  Biomass energy is renewable energy because the trees from which biomass fuel is produced can easily (and relatively quickly compared to fossil fuels) be replaced by growing more trees.  Biomass energy will also remain sustainable as long as forest plantations are developed to cope with the demand for biomass fuel. To satisfy Renewable Heat Incentive criteria with regard to renewability and sustainability, and meet biomass boiler grants criteria, biomass fuel must be sourced from an accredited supplier from the official Renewable Heat Incentive Biomass Suppliers List.

The fact that biomass energy is carbon neutral and renewable is illustrated below in the ‘biomass carbon cycle:

BIomass boilers and stoves - Biomass Carbon Cycle

For anyone who has doubts about the carbon neutral qualities of biomass fuel; if a tree was allowed to die naturally and rot away, as it decomposed it would release exactly the same amount of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere as it would if it had been converted to biomass fuel and burned in a biomass boiler or biomass stove.  Converting a dead tree into biomass fuel simply speeds up this natural process.

Biomass Energy is considered to be renewable energy

Energy is classed as renewable if its source is not depleted as it is used (such solar power and wind power) or when it can be naturally and sustainably replenished (as in the case of biomass energy). Biomass energy from biomass fuel is carbon neutral, renewable and sustainable.  Fossil fuels such as heating oil, coal, LPG and natural gas are not capable of generating renewable energy because they take such long time to be created.  Existing supplies of fossil fuels are limited and they cannot therefore be sustainable at our current level of fuel usage.  Without fuel meeting sustainability criteria, it cannot be classed as a source of renewable energy.

The use of renewable energy is important because the average temperature across the earth’s surface is increasing and whether we see it as global warming, climate change or part of a normal cycle, most western governments have decided that we need to do something about it.  More than 30 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide is emitted into the atmosphere each year as a result of burning fossil fuels and most people accept that there is a scientific link between carbon emissions and rising temperatures.

The introduction of financial incentives for renewable energy such as solar, wind and biomass to provide energy for homes and businesses is a positive step towards trying to reduce the effects of global warming and climate change. Governments are therefore introducing financial incentives such as the Renewable Heat Incentive to promote the generation and use of renewable energy.

The Climate Change Act of 2008 legislated for a reduction in carbon emissions and set legally binding ‘carbon budgets’ which would apply to all sectors of the economy.  With carbon emissions in the UK in 1990 used as a base figure, the Government is committed to a 34% reduction in carbon emissions by 2020 and an 80% reduction by 2050.

The Government has therefore introduced a number of initiatives to encourage householders, businesses and other organisations to use renewable energy and improve the energy efficiency of their homes. Financial incentives schemes include the Green Deal, the Energy Company Obligation, Solar PV Feed-in Tariffs and now the Renewable Heat Incentive which provides biomass boiler grants.

For more information about the Energy Company Obligation, or ECO, please go to www.affordablewarmthscheme.co.uk

For more information on the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive and biomass boiler grants, please go to www.domesticrenewableheatincentive.co.uk

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