The Heat Pump Association (HPA) has released a report outlining the steps that the association believes the UK government must take to shape future policy and decarbonise the heating industry.

The report sets out to "level the playing field’" across all heating types, according to the HPA, encouraging best practice and low carbon heating for all installations, regardless of technology type. This, the HPA says, will ensure the smooth transformation of the domestic heating market from fossil fuels to low carbon over the next decade, reducing fuel bills and carbon emissions from homes.

The aims of the report are to:

  • Promote changes to establish infrastructure in existing homes for low carbon heating
  • Build and develop installer skills for the recommended changes
  • Lower fuel bills for existing heating systems
  • Lower carbon emissions for existing heating systems.

The recommendations can be neatly summarised into three key points:

  1. Introduce a maximum flow temperature of 55°C in Building Regulations to be applied to replacement heating systems from 2026
  2. Introduce in Building Regulations for Heat Loss Calculations to be carried out for all replacement heating systems from 2026
  3. All heating installers to have a Low Temperature Heating and Hot Water Qualification, or equivalent, as part of accreditation scheme refresher courses.

According to the HPA, the implementation of these recommendations would establish the heating infrastructure in homes, and skills among the installer base, needed for low carbon heating installations, by laying the groundwork for wider heat pump adoption; heat pumps being an established technology, recognised by the Committee on Climate change as the backbone to the decarbonisation of heat.

Graham Wright, Chairman at the HPA, said: "This report could not come at a more pertinent time. The push for a Green Recovery from COVID-19 has put the UK in a unique position to be able to develop new and innovative policy that works to tackle the negative effects of the pandemic whilst working towards net-zero. The regulations suggested in this paper undoubtedly offer the government a road to recovery for the heating industry that is green and saves energy and money for the UK."

You can find the report in full here.