EU consumer groups encourage roll-out of electric heat pumps – EURACTIV.com

Electric heat pumps are the best and most economical solution for individual heating, according to a study by the European Consumer Organization (BEUC) published on Thursday (November 25th). EURACTIV France reports.

According to the study, the electric heat pump is best suited to meet ecological goals as it is “the cheapest option for consumers who want to decarbonise their heating”.

Of course, this is only the case if they can get funding to help them purchase equipment in the first place.

The study estimates the costs between 2025 and 2040 and compares them for the heat generated with electric heat pumps, hybrid electric hydrogen heat pumps and hydrogen boilers. In Poland, for example, between 3,000 and 6,000 euros, in the Czech Republic between 2,500 and 5,000 euros.

The estimates take into account the cost of equipment and “the cost of generating power, operating and retrofitting energy networks, the cost of insulating buildings, and the cost of purchasing and installing the equipment”.

Another study published in 2020 by the French Renewable Energy Observatory indicates that heat pumps average between € 3,670 and € 11,210 without installation – a high price for the average household.

Industry: European electricity grid can supply 50 million heat pumps

Electric heat pumps can be used on a large scale in Europe without jeopardizing grid stability, while at the same time allowing greater integration of renewable energy sources and improved energy efficiency in buildings, according to CEOs of major energy companies including Spanish Iberdrola, Italian Enel and the French EDF.

The high costs could be related to the fact that the French sector saw its largest one-year decline – 13.5% – since 2016 for individual geothermal heat pumps.

“The equipment is relatively expensive to purchase compared to alternative solutions (especially aerothermal heat pumps), which discourages the vast majority of people from considering these solutions further. In addition, this technology is still very little known to the public, ”says the study.

Aerothermal heat pumps performed better with a 10.4% increase in sales, possibly due to a slightly lower price.

Some of the costs can be financed through certain programs such as MaPrimeRénov ‘or the interest-free eco-loan, but there are concerns that some citizens are unaware of their existence.

In their study, the European consumer associations encourage national governments and local authorities to support households financially in purchasing the pumps.

They also call on the European Commission to “give priority to the use of individual electric heat pumps in urban areas”. For this reason, “the next gas package should not set a target for blending hydrogen into existing gas networks,” they added.

[Edited by Alice Taylor]

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