Mike Foster, EUA Chief Executive, makes an excellent point that ground source heat pumps (GSHPs) cannot be truly effective if insulation levels are insufficient.
“For new build, with high insulation standards, heat pumps may deliver. For the 88 per cent of existing homes off grid, let’s consider sensible alternatives. Now if BEIS don’t agree with these numbers, call their bluff, time to show us your hand.”
However, equally as important to the performance of a GSHP is the underlying geology, which is a massive factor in the sizing of the ground loop. Under or over size the ground loop and the performance of the system will degrade over time. There are too many installations where not enough attention has been paid to either the geology or the insulation levels of a property, resulting in failed installations. GSHPs could play a part in sustainable heat and cooling in the UK, but they have to be installed in a sustainable way!
About EUA : Founded in 1905, the Energy and Utilities Alliance (EUA) is a not-for-profit trade association that provides a leading industry voice to help shape the future policy direction within the energy sector. More info at: www.eua.org.uk/