Insights / How heat pumps can help your business

How heat pumps can decarbonise the UK while helping your business

4th June 2021

We’ve already seen the decarbonisation of power generation, and the decarbonisation of transport is really gathering pace. Now decarbonising heating is high on the agenda too.

The UK’s committed to reducing its carbon emissions by at least 80% of their 1990 levels by 2050 in order to avoid catastrophic climate change.

With almost 20% of the UK’s carbon emissions coming from heating the places where we live and work, it’s a huge opportunity for businesses to make a big difference.

And when it comes to finding the best technology to reduce those emissions, the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) found that hybrid heat pumps are marginally lower cost than other zero-carbon technologies across a range of assumptions.

So, heat pumps can help your business reduce its carbon emissions – at the same time as cutting your energy costs. They can also help your business play its part in decarbonising the UK as a whole.

But what exactly are they, and what other benefits can they bring to your business?

What are heat pumps?

Heat pumps work by extracting the heat from the air or the ground around your building.

As their name suggests, Air Source Heat Pumps (ASHPs) extract it from the air, while Ground Source Heat Pumps (GSHPs) extract it from the earth beneath it.

Hybrid Heat Pumps (HHPs) draw heat from the air or ground, and then use a boiler to boost it when the air or soil reaches a set temperature.

You can use ASHPs, GSHPs and HHPs to heat your business premises through underfloor heating or radiators. These won’t reach the same temperatures as they would if the water inside them was heated by a boiler. That means you may find that you need to invest in extra insulation at the same time as a heat pump.

Heat pumps all also rely on electricity to condense the warmth they absorb and bring it back inside your building. This power could be self-generated from onsite solar PV or wind turbines, come from your own battery storage, or from the grid.

How can heat pumps help your business?

Heat pumps help reduce the carbon emissions that come from heating your workplaces by an enormous amount, enabling you to meet your sustainability goals. They can also help you significantly reduce your business’s heating bills, as the warmth they extract from the atmosphere or the ground is free.

If your business generates its own power, heat pumps could leave you with energy to export to the grid. And you can also profit from heat pumps by optimising the way your business uses electricity – though you may need to find a partner to help you make the most of this.

We’re currently optimising a commercial 380 kWh GSHP on a farm in Scotland. This provides low temperature heating and cooling for the farm’s produce stores. We’re optimising this asset for our customer, having installed equipment that automatically turns down the heat pump system when it’s beneficial to do so.

We’re suppling them with the electricity they need, and we’re also enabling the farm to profit from the electricity flexibility market. All without affecting its ability to carry on its work in any way.

If you’d like to find out more about how heat pumps can help your business profit from heat pumps and electricity flexibility, please get in touch.

Get in touch today

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