Heat pumps scare the bejezus out of those who peddle natural gas, oil, and propane for a living. It’s all about efficiency, you see. Just as electric cars are far more efficient than gasoline powered cars, heat pumps, which operate on electricity, are far more efficient than most home heating equipment powered by fossil fuels.
In a press release, Andrew Middleton, managing director for Net Zero Ventures at British Gas, said, “Heat pumps are an essential part of the UK’s journey towards a decarbonized future. While we recognize that many households are being cautious with their spending in the current climate, we’re encouraging those customers who can make the move to low carbon heating to do so now, and benefit from the government incentives for early adopters.
“Installing a heat pump is one of the single best things households can do today to lower their carbon footprint. While specifications will differ to suit a variety of homes, it’s important we act now to start customers on this journey. That’s why we’ve committed to training 3,500 apprentices over the next decade, many of whom will gain specialist green skills to support with the demand that’s coming.”
Air source heat pumps are the low carbon future of home heating. Thanks to 0% VAT and a £5,000 government grant, prices now start from just £4,999. We’re currently installing in many parts of the UK with even more areas coming soon, British Gas says.
Heat pumps will play an essential part in the UK achieving its Net Zero goals by 2050 and British Gas has been leading the market with over 1,500 heat pumps installed to date and completing the first install to benefit from the Government boiler upgrade scheme.
British Gas started installations in the South West before rolling out installs nationwide. There are plans to incorporate Hive Active Heating controls into the proposition so that customers can manage their heating remotely and improve their energy efficiency further. The company is also installing air source heat pumps into social housing and is aiming to install up to 1,200 in the next year across private and social housing.
Heat pump technology is widely recognized as the best immediate option for millions of off-grid, well-insulated homes, and is critical to keeping the UK on track to achieve net zero by 2050 but it is not for everyone the company says. They’re only worthwhile if a home is energy efficient, which means improvements to insulation may be required. Installing a heat pump can be a bigger job than getting a new boiler and involve substantial changes to pipes and radiators, which is one reason not all homes will qualify for the British Gas offer.
The offer applies to a standard air source heat pump up to 7Kw and a dumb cylinder with a capacity up to 200 liters, along with mechanical and electrical installation. British Gas will further support customers by offering five years interest free credit and five years of warranty after installation.
We aren’t quite sure what a “dumb cylinder” is. Perhaps some of our readers in the UK could help us out with that. It sounds like a pet name for any number of recent prime ministers, but we could be wrong about that.
As we reported yesterday, the American Gas Association and its colleagues are pushing back furiously against a Biden administration proposal to require gas-fired furnaces to stop wasting so much fuel. From the wells to the pipelines that transport the gas, to the appliances that burn it, more than 50% of the energy in natural gas is wasted or goes straight into the atmosphere. The world cannot afford to continue being so profligate with its energy resources.
Why is British Gas doing this when their cousins in the colonies are kicking up such a fuss? Maybe they can see beyond the end of next week and think making the Earth unsuitable for human habitation is a poor long term business strategy.
Heat Pumps For The Maritimes
In Newfoundland, Sea-Force Hyperbaric is switching from three oil-fired furnaces to air to water heat pumps at a cost of around $150,000. $37,000 will be paid from the government of Canada’s Low Carbon Economy Fund. The provincial government of Newfoundland and Labrador is also contributing $37,000, while Sea-Force Hyperbaric will supply the balance of the funds. The province says it expects the project to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 150 tons annually.
The reception facility was built to treat divers working in the offshore industry, as required by the Newfoundland and Labrador offshore diving safety regulations. It is the only shore-based hyperbaric reception facility in North America.
This project is a good example of the climate leadership that will be supported under the expanded Low Carbon Economy Fund, which in Canada’s 2030 Emissions Reduction Plan received a $2.2 billion commitment over seven years. Investments in climate action initiatives like this are part of the Government of Canada’s commitment to fight climate change, create good jobs, and build a strong, clean economy for everyone.
“The more we reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, the closer we get to achieving our target of net zero by 2050. Our government is pleased to support Sea-Force Hyperbaric with their fuel-switching project as they work to improve the facility’s energy efficiency and energy consumption,” said Bernard Davis, minister of Environment and Climate Change for the government of Newfoundland and Labrador.
Heat pumps are to air conditioning what electronic fuel injection is to carburetors. It’s a way of doing something that is commonplace — heating and cooling — but is much more efficient. We simply don’t have time to continue pouring emissions from burning fossil fuels into the atmosphere — not if we want humans to continue living on the Earth.
Of course, if you don’t care about sustainability and have a degree from a school of economics that teaches the tired old notion that greed is good, then you don’t lose any sleep over a few million tons of carbon dioxide. It’s astonishing that there are people in the world who think their own personal financial position takes precedence over the needs of humanity, but there are.
Projects that make switching to heat pumps easier are leading the way to a new way of thinking. We can only hope the change comes soon enough to save the Earth from a mass extinction event.
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