The STA welcomes DECC’s announcement today that grants available to households installing renewable heat technologies, including solar heating systems, are to double . The grant for solar heating rises to £600 subject to a requirement that the household undertakes a Green Deal energy efficiency assessment.
Stuart Elmes, Chair of the STA’s Solar Thermal Working Group, said:
“This is fantastic news for solar heating. The industry can really get behind the improved voucher levels and vigorously drive towards a spring 2014 launch of the domestic RHI with renewed enthusiasm.
This announcement is, at last, a tangible demonstration of Government’s oft-proclaimed commitment to domestic renewable heat technologies. Many within industry had wavered in their belief that they would ever see a domestic RHI! We now need to get the good news out there and let householders know that solar heating is more affordable.”
As well as coordinating a letter to DECC with several other trade associations requesting improved grant levels, the STA also conducted its first direct social media campaign last month with the hash tag #tweetforheat . Industry and advocates used the hash tag on Twitter to urge Energy Minister Greg Barker to respond to a blog  on the delays to the RHI written by Stuart Elmes.
STA CEO Paul Barwell said:
“It’s great to see that Government has reacted so positively to our suggestions on how to speed up development of the renewable heating sector. The STA led the industry campaign urging Government to consider this proposal and is delighted to see that Ministers have listened to our calls.”
“However, there’s still work to be done. We will continue to make the case for our industry, in particular over the capped tariff for solar heating. It is very important that this summer’s announcement of domestic RHI tariffs should be comprehensive in scope and also specify the qualification criteria and deeming method.”