The climate minister Greg Barker has confirmed this week that some tariffs for the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) will be increased from next year in a bid to encourage uptake of renewable energy sources by businesses. He has also acknowledged that the domestic scheme has seen a number of delays in recent months.

Technical issues

During his interview with Business Green, Barker conceded that the RHI scheme had seen a number of delays which he put down to technical and resource issues. However he said that there was now a sensible timetable for delivery for the non-domestic part of the scheme which should improve uptake. He stated that some new technologies will be allowed under the RHI and that this will be implemented from next Spring and there will be new tariffs associated with those technologies which have seen low uptake so far.

Barker pointed out that the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) is determined to improve the take-up of renewable energy and that these new tariffs will offer further incentives. He says that within weeks the industry will see new tariffs in the non-domestic scheme although these will not be across the board.

New technologies

The RHI is a scheme which offers payment to businesses and households where certain renewable heat technologies have been installed. Owners are offered a set tariff on the amount of energy they produce – a figure which is yet to be set for domestic installations. The scheme was due to begin this year for the domestic side, but has been beset by delays. It was expected to launch during this year after a consultation was carried out last year.The non-domestic scheme has been running for a few months, however domestic schemes are likely to be at least another year away.

Some new technologies will also be added to the RHI list for non-domestic producers with the potential for geothermal, air to air heat pumps, air to water heat pumps and anaerobic digesters possibly being added to those renewable heat sources which can claim the RHI.