The United Kingdom government has reportedly put its weight behind a plan that could save homeowners major money in the future.
The Guardian’s Jillian Ambrose reported Dec. 13 that the proposed regulations would outlaw gas- and hydrogen-ready boilers in newly constructed houses, setting the stage for the standard installation of heat pumps beginning in 2025.
“Allowing fossil fuel or hydrogen heating in new homes would have locked in high bills and high carbon emissions for a generation,” MCS Foundation director David Cowdrey said, noting it was a “huge relief” that the government acknowledged the benefits of heat pumps.
The driving factor behind the overheating of our planet is the burning of dirty energy sources — such as gas, oil, and coal — leading to concerns about the spread of mosquito-borne diseases and the inability of our oceans and seas to produce enough food, among others.
According to the International Energy Agency, the heating of buildings produces 4.4 billion tons of carbon pollution every year, accounting for 10% of global carbon dioxide pollution.
Because heat pumps are more energy efficient than gas boilers, however, switching to one can reduce the amount of heat-trapping gases released into our atmosphere by at least 20%, per the IEA.
While there have been some concerns about the ability of heat pumps to keep dwellings at safe temperatures in colder climates, the IEA pointed out that more than half of the buildings in Norway already utilize the devices, and Sweden and Finland aren’t far behind.
Juliet Phillips, a senior policy adviser for climate think tank E3G, noted the latest proposal would prevent “the need for costly retrofits in the future,” per The Guardian.
“Making heat pumps the default heating source for all new homes and banning gas and hydrogen boilers is absolutely the right step for the climate and for households’ energy bills,” Cowdrey said.
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