Low income UK homes ‘should be given free heat pumps’ to meet climate targets – but hydrogen ruled out
(The Guardian, 18 Oct 2023) Advisers say government should cover cost of replacing gas boilers with pumps in more than 2m homes.
More than 2 million low-income households should be given a free electric heat pump to replace their gas boiler if the UK hopes to meet its legally binding climate targets, according to the government’s advisers.
Britain’s official infrastructure tsars have called on the government to spend up to £4bn every year for the next 12 years to cover the full cost of heat pump installations, and support energy efficiency improvements, for 1.5 million households on lower incomes in England.
It has also called on the government to spend up to £4.5bn a year to support energy efficiency improvements and heat pump installations across the public sector estate and social housing, which would include another 1 million low income households.
For other households the National Infrastructure Commission (NIC) has urged the government to offer £7,000 a year to each homeowner to help meet the cost of a heat pump, alongside a 0% finance option to cover the remaining upfront costs. The cost of a heat pump, plus installation, is typically between £7,000 and £13,000.