The Heat Pump Association (HPA) has launched a training strategy that lays out how the heating industry needs to transform to enable the wider adoption of heat pumps throughout the UK building stock.
The upskilling of heating installers provides the potential for long-term job growth at the same time as helping to achieve net zero emissions; something that could form an important part of a ‘green recovery’.
The strategy contains five clear steps for how a plumbing and heating engineer can be trained to meet the new challenges we face in trying to achieve the UK goal of a zero carbon future, reducing administration cost, and recommending to government that they support a training voucher scheme for the first 5,000 installers to go through the new course. The strategy comes at the same time two industry-wide consultations are published on qualification criteria for training courses.
Graham Wright, Chairman of the HPA, says, “The Committee on Climate Change has made clear that we need to move to heat pumps taking over from gas boilers as the default replacement heating system within the next 10-15 years. This is ambitious, but entirely achievable if we move now to retrain and up-skill a market that already exists of around 120,000 existing heating engineers. The role of installers cannot be underestimated in decarbonising heat. The Strategy we are launching today, together with the consultations on qualification criteria released earlier this week, are key steps towards achieving this and provide the potential for green jobs as we look to recover from the current crisis.”
The HPA represents the significant majority of volume manufacturers of heat pumps in the UK (over 80% of the market). The Association works closely with its membership to support policymakers in the development of effective heat decarbonisation policy and other matters that affect the interests of end users, wider stakeholders, and the industry.
In November 2019, the HPA launched ‘Net Zero: A Roadmap for the Role of Heat Pumps’ which identified training and skills as a key enabler for the decarbonisation of heat through heat pumps. The new strategy paper, and consultations released earlier this week, bring substance to that.
Timetable is for course criteria to be submitted to Ofqual following consultation; the first training courses are expected to be up and running by the end of 2020.