Carl Arntzen, director, Worcester, Bosch Group.

Greener boiler initiative gets green light

Published:  05 January, 2010

WORCESTER: A major boiler maker has heaped praise on the Government for making its 'Greener Boiler Initiative' easy to access for homeowners after it was launched by the Prime Minister this morning.

The Greener Boiler Initiative, informally known as the Boiler Scrappage Scheme, was first unveiled in the Chancellor's pre-Budget Report in December 2009, and leading boiler manufacturer, Worcester, Bosch Group has commended the speed at which it has been introduced and the simplicity of the application process.

Carl Arntzen, director of Bosch Thermotechnology, commented: "We are impressed with the format of the new scheme and how the grants will be administered. Having the Prime Minister unveil the plans emphasises the importance that the Government has placed on the issue of inefficient heating.

"To have seen the whole process move so quickly has been a breath of fresh air and we are very optimistic about this new approach.

"The initiative will make a real impact, by both significantly reducing carbon emissions and securing affordable long-term energy prices for homeowners.

"Worcester will be supporting this scheme with an additional incentive, details of which will be unveiled shortly."

The new scheme will offer up to 125 000 homeowners in England a £400 incentive to replace their old Band G gas or oil-fired boiler with a new high-efficiency condensing boiler, on a first-come first-served basis.

Grants will be administered by the Energy Saving Trust (EST) and vouchers will be issued from 18 January onwards, but homeowners are able to apply for a grant immediately and can arrange for their boiler to be replaced now by their chosen installer.

All applicants will be entitled to the grant, providing the installer is Gas Safe or OFTEC-registered and they have a Band G boiler.

Vouchers can be redeemed against any A-rated gas, oil or LPG-fired boiler, Microgeneration Certification Scheme-registered biomass boilers and heat pumps.

Solar thermal systems are also included, if combined with an eligible boiler replacement. Electric boilers, however, will not be eligible.

Vouchers are valid for 12 weeks from the date of issue. If the voucher is not redeemed within this time, it will be cancelled and reallocated.

The EST has a dedicated number for customers to call on its Act On CO2 Helpline (0800 512 012) for more information about the scheme. There is a simple self-diagnosis section on the EST website for homeowners to identify if they have a Band G boiler and are therefore eligible for the grant.

It is estimated that there are currently 4.5 million Band G gas-fired boilers in use throughout the UK that contribute to the country's high level of harmful carbon emissions.

Mr Arntzen added: "If the full amount of money allocated for the initiative is utilised, it will save the country 140 000 tonnes of carbon. We are extremely pleased that the Government has responded so swiftly and efficiently to our recommendations. It was in May 2009 that we first started campaigning for this type of scheme, so for it to have been implemented in just seven months is a fantastic achievement for all involved."

The Greener Boiler Initiative grant will only be available in England, due to legislation governing the Devolved Administrations. Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland Assemblies and Governments will take decisions on whether they want similar schemes.

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