News From OilFiredUp
Hawksley 'Very Disappointed' By RHI Ineligibility
24th September 2012
The recent announcement by the government that bio-liquids will not be included in the proposed Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) ensures many off-gas homes continue to have excessive carbon footprints. That's the view of Director General and leading Bioliquid advocate, Jeremy Hawksley.
According to OFTEC, the omission of bio-liquids means that homes in rural areas will have very little incentive to switch to renewable fuels in the future.
The Government's decision to exclude Bioliquids, comes after it accepted B30K - a blend of biofuel and kerosene - as a potential candidate for RHI support in 2010. OFTEC claim that B30K it has the potential to reduce carbon emissions by 28%, but ministers say they will only give RHI support to biomass boilers, air or ground source heat pumps and solar thermal technologies. The Government's rationale for excluding B30K and other Bioliquids from the domestic RHI scheme, is they would prefer to focus on wholly renewable domestic heating solutions. The Government believe that including part-renewable solutions, could undermine this objective.
Commenting on the latest RHI proposals, OFTEC Director General Jeremy Hawksley, whose name has become synomonous with B30K said, '"We're very disappointed at this decision and will continue to argue forcefully during the consultation period for bio-liquids to have RHI support. Whilst extensive field trials have demonstrated that B30K works fine in existing boilers, it seems odd that government policy wants to make rural oil users rip out those perfectly good systems when they could just be converted to run on bio-liquid.
"In contrast, recent trials of heat pumps revealed the limitations of the technology in many homes, such as having to install oversized radiators to cope with the lower heat temperatures. The cost of running electricity driven heat pumps is similar to the running costs of an oil boiler, so it's difficult to see the benefit to the consumer of changing their system. We hope that ministers will consider all these points during the consultation process."
Around 1.4 million households in the UK use oil, and OFTEC thinks that many of these will find the RHI unworkable. OFTEC claims that not only do the RHI technologies proposed in the consultation have expensive up front capital costs, but many of them require home improvements before the property is considered eligible. Applicants will have to demonstrate that they have already installed certain measures such as loft and cavity wall insulation. In addition, OFTEC claims that the grants payable under RHI may change in future years, so there is no guarantee of payback.
However, despite Jeremy Hawksley's clear enthusiasm for B30K, it is unclear whether a householder or homeowner who wished to convert their existing heating oil system to run on the fuel today, actually could. OilFiredUp.com contacted 20 fuel distributors across the UK. None currently offer the fuel, few had even heard of it and none had any plans to offer it in the immediate future... or if they did, they weren't for telling. A quick check of 10 heating oil price comparison websites also confirmed that none are currently offering the fuel.