The biomass degressions for both the non domestic and domestic Renewable Heat Incentive were announced at the start of June to come into force on the 1 July.
What has happened in June?
The first week of June was possibly our busiest ever week for selling wood pellet boilers to installers in Wales, Scotland and the North of England. This was mainly for the installer to be able to get the boiler in time to install it before the rate changes on 1 July.
Roger and Steve went out to Bulgaria early in June for annual training and an update on the NES product range. There will be some new log gasification boilers being added to the Pyroburn range as MCS accredited boilers. These will be affordable and without a Lambda sensor. 18, 25, 30 and 40kW.
There are many other upgrades, and we will release details when they become live.
Once back in the UK we attended the Eco Technology Show in Brighton. This was located at the Amex Stadium, home of Brighton and Hove Albion.
We exibited a 40kW wood pellet boiler (Pelleburn) with a 1500l thermal store. Perhaps our 2 best selling items. Fantasic weather over the week, finishing with a thunder storm on the way home.
At the show there were many interesting talks, and the panel discussion around meeting the 2020 targets for emissions reduction was the best attended. Caroline Lucas chaired the panel. One part of the discussion was that the RHI funding is to finish in 2017, and the total installations to date do not help the UK reach the targets for renewable heating without more funding. There is a new energy minister, Amber Rudd, who is yet to comment on the RHI, we will have to wait and see.
We were also near to the Center of Alternative Energy Stand. They have produced a document “Zero Carbon Britain, rethinking the future”, which I am busy reading at the moment. They do emphasise the need to improve the thermal quality of buildings and also point out that there are limits to “growing” biomass as there are competing demands for land. (Personally I do think that there can be better woodland management and co-ordination on a local scale to produce chip, pellet and log products. I also think that there will be substitute materials for biomass that can also be fuels. e.g. waste from anearobic digestion, recycled coffee granuals, straw, etc, all of which there is work towards meeting a standard at the moment). However the point is clear – if we want to reduce CO2 and CO emissions for heat then we are about 20% of the way there at the moment and 5 years to go.
After Brighton I went up to Scotland – firstly surveying a possible 160kW installation in Dumfries and Galloway with DMS Energy, after which of to Oban and Ferguson Energy, where I looked at a number of installations that had been running for some time, including the Bunkhouse on the Isle of Mull.
What struck me was, despite the rain, the area was beautiful and ideal for biomass. For homes the Pyroburn (log boiler), works very well as fuel can be plentiful.
What is the best way to get from Oban to Aboyne (near Aberdeen)? Up, underneath or through the Cairngorms? I went under and found the road shut (big detour), then on my return I went through and found the road shut (another detour), so perhaps the best route is above! I did, however, find Sugplumb Ltd very accomodating. They are also fitting a lot of renewables at the moment. I did notice the trees during my scenic drive!
After a brief pitstop in Blackford I went down to Oiline Ltd near to Colne, Skipton and Keithley. They have been installing mainly pellet boilers into an area that seems to be more rural than the Cairngorms. Certainly the roads are no better!
There do seem to be fewer trees in this part of North Yorkshire, however I do know that Oil Line are completing a Pyroburn log gasification boiler at the time of writing.
What remains of June for many is getting the RHI applications in before the deadline. We will be making further visits out to see boilers in early July.