The UK Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has launched a consultation on a series of proposals to improve boiler and heating system efficiency, in order to facilitate the potential switch to hydrogen heating in the future.
“These proposals aim to reduce domestic gas consumption, thereby lowering consumer bills and carbon emissions, improving our energy security, and preparing for the transition to low-carbon heating,” the government said, noting that the proposals focus on domestic natural gas boilers with capacities of up to 45 kW. “However, we are also seeking views on whether it is appropriate to extend these proposals to boilers sized up to 70 kW.”
Through one of the proposals, the government aims to introduce a requirement for all new domestic-scale gas boilers to be “hydrogen-ready” from 2026.
“The government’s view is that there is a strong case for the introduction of hydrogen-ready boilers as standard from this date, provided that these boilers can meet all relevant regulatory standards, that they can reach price parity with existing gas boilers if deployed market wide, and assuming that a single market-wide definition can be agreed,” said the government.
It said a gas engineer could easily convert the new boilers to operate on hydrogen. But the devices may also continue to operate on gas, if hydrogen is not economically viable.
“At this stage, there is no guarantee that any hydrogen-ready boilers will ultimately be converted to run on hydrogen gas,” the government said, adding that consumers will not face premiums on their purchases. “Based on a price promise made by industry, the government expects the upfront costs of hydrogen-ready boilers to reach price parity with those of existing natural gas boilers once they match the current levels of production.”
The British Energy Security Strategy currently aims for 10 GW of domestic hydrogen production by 2030.
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