Combined Heat & Power, District Heating & Cooling, Demand Side Services, Energy Efficiency

Existing renewable CHP plant to be grandfathered in CHPQA decision

12 July 2013

DECC today published its decision on proposed changes to CHPQA requirements for renewable CHP. The Government's response takes into account many of the proposals put forward in the CHPA's consultation response, which was developed with signficant input from members of the Association's CHPQA Working Group.

  • CHP industry welcomes protection of existing CHP schemes from changes to quality assurance criteria
  • Successful engagement between DECC and industry has helped ensure CHP schemes deliver real energy savings
  • Decisions on other renewable policies now key if Government is to bring forward hundreds of millions of pounds in renewable energy investment

The CHP industry today welcomed the significant boost to investor confidence as a result of the Government's decision to grandfather existing renewable CHP schemes from changes to its quality assurance programme.

 On Friday, the Government published its response to its consultation on proposed changes to certification criteria for renewable CHP schemes. The decision tightens the quality assurance criteria to ensure that renewable CHP are delivering minimum energy savings. Renewable CHP schemes will also now be required to have a 10% minimum heat efficiency.

The industry has consistently called on Government to protect existing plant from the proposed changes, as a retrospective regulatory change would significantly damage investor confidence and harm future investments in renewable energy. The Association also pulled together detailed technical data from across the industry to show that the initially proposed criteria needed to better reflect actual CHP plant operation.

Dr Tim Rotheray, CHPA Head of Policy and Communications, said:

“It is vital that renewable CHP schemes deliver real energy savings and today’s decision to improve the CHPQA scheme’s efficiency standards, including a new minimum heat efficiency requirement, will help to ensure that. But it is equally important existing investments are protected from regulatory change, and I’m delighted by today’s grandfathering announcement which will protect investor confidence and bring forward new investments in renewable energy.

“This announcement highlights the Government’s consistent message on the important value which highly-efficient combined heat and power technology provides to the UK. We will need to carefully review the formulae which will be used to determine the quality of renewable CHP, but we are very pleased by DECC officials’ engagement with the industry and their recognition the initial consultation proposals were not economically realistic.

“With the quality assurance framework for renewable CHP now in place, it is now time for the Government to back it with the right policies, including a CHP-specific rate and enhanced pre-accreditation under the Renewable Heat Incentive, so we can bring forward hundreds of millions of pounds of renewable CHP investment.”

Other announcements in the decision document include:

  • 10% minimum heat efficiency required from CHP plant
  • Recognition of Primary Energy Saving as the key measure for CHP efficiency, and recognition of the high value of CHP-produced electricity and process heat.
  • A scale back to safeguard to prevent a 'cliff-edge' for CHP plant.
  • Inclusion of the Primary Energy Saving calculation in CHPQA guidance notes
  • A longer temporary lower criteria for CHP on heat networks to help encourage renewable district heat development.

For further information or to request an interview, please contact:

Tim Rotheray
Head of Policy, CHPA
T 020 3031 8740
E [email protected]

Notes to editors:
The Government today published its response to its consultation, Revising certification criteria for renewable Combined Heat and Power scheme. The consultation included proposals for revising the certification criteria for renewable Combined Heat and Power (CHP) schemes. The Government's decision document can be found here.

CHPQA certification criteria determine the eligibility of plant for CHP specific bands under the Renewables Obligation banding arrangements and other forms of Government support.

The CHPA's response to the Government's CHPQA consultation can be found here.

DECC will grandfather existing quality assurance criteria for all schemes that were in operation, or that can demonstrate they reached financial close, prior to 26th July 2012.

The new quality assurance criteria will go into effect in January 2014.

About CHP
Combined heat and power (CHP), integrates the production of usable heat and power (electricity), in one single, highly efficient process. Delivering a minimum of 10% energy savings, it makes the very best use of renewable and fossil fuels. This efficiency means less stress on precious fuel resources and lower carbon emissions.
CHP works by recovering heat from the power generation process and putting it to work in industry, buildings and homes, often delivering significant cost and CO2 savings. CHP currently provides 7% of UK electricity and in 2010 provided emissions savings of 13 million tonnes of CO2. For more information about CHP, click here.

About the CHPA
The Combined Heat and Power Association (CHPA) is the leading advocate of an integrated approach to delivering energy services using combined heat and power and district heating. The Association has over 100 members active across a range of technologies and markets and is widely recognised as one of the leading industry bodies in the sustainable energy sector.
For more information about the CHPA see:

About District Heating
A district heating scheme comprises a network of insulated pipes used to deliver heat from the point of generation, in the form of hot water or steam, to an end user. District heating networks provide the means to transport heat efficiently. Heat networks can be supplied with heat from a diverse range of sources including power stations, waste-to-energy facilities, biomass boilers and CHP plants, gas-fired CHP units, heat pumps, electric boilers and even solar thermal arrays. Click here for more information about district heating and here for case studies.



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