Will the UK boiler scrappage scheme return?

Launched just over two years ago,  the UK boiler scrappage scheme was introduced as an efficient and helpful way of further reducing the UK’s carbon emissions.

Given that the boiler accounts for such a large percentage of household energy use – estimates vary, but for most of us well over half the energy we use is for central heating and hot water. So ensuring people would move towards the newer type of energy efficient boiler was going to be more or less imperative for any government with a commitment to reducing co2 emissions.

Carbon emission targets for reduction are generally on the ambitious side, so encouraging people to get rid of older and less efficient equipment also meant that these machines were permanently taken out of use. To qualify for the boiler scrappage scheme there were a few conditions: you had to have the least efficient type of boiler and dependent on your age the boiler had to be working (under 60s) and either working or not working (over 60s).

The scheme was a great success, as many of us who take an interest in green energy and sustainability had guessed it would be. As the Energy Saving Trust‘s website says, “Unprecedented numbers of householders took advantage of the scheme to improve their heating systems and reduce their heating bills”. And not only that – the scheme also undoubtedly raised the profile of household energy efficiency.

But all good things must come to an end, and after upwards of 110 000 new boilers being installed as a direct result of the initiative, the scheme was wound down. Good news for people north of the border, however, as it was announced in January 2011 that it was to re-open in Scotland – more details here.

Will the scheme ever return UK-wide? At the moment, it’s difficult to tell – for the time being, the EST provides info on other grants and discounts that may be available, but following the closure of the scheme there haven’t as yet been any signals that it’s likely to return.

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