German government considers scrap bonus for old boilers – media report
The German coalition government is considering a scrapping scheme for old boilers to try and overcome the dispute over how to move the transition to sustainable heating forward, reports Spiegel Online. The parties approached a compromise on how to help citizens on low or medium incomes switch from a fossil fuel heating system to heat pumps, government sources said. “There are talks of paying out the support in the form of a scrapping premium for old boilers, similar to what was done for cars after the financial crisis in 2009,” the article said. At around 20,000 euros, the installation of heat pumps in private homes is significantly more expensive than conventional gas boilers, and Green Party economy and climate minister Robert Habeck has promised that those on low incomes would be compensated for this difference by the state. The necessary funds could come from the country’s Climate and Transformation Fund, which is filled with revenues from emissions trading. There will also be relief for tenants who are affected by the replacement of heating systems in their homes, Spiegel reported.
Germany’s three-way coalition government has been waging a public battle over pending climate policy decisions, with the transition in the heating sector being particularly controversial. MPs from the Free Democrats (FDP) called the economy and climate ministry’s draft legislation for decarbonising heating a “wrecking orgy” for fossil systems that made no sense ecologically or economically. In the coalition treaty, the parties said “as of 2025, all new heating systems have to run on 65 percent renewable energy,” but did not explicitly mention a ban on fossil heating systems. The government pushed the target forward to 2024 in response to the energy crisis. Over 80 percent of Germany’s heating demand is currently met by fossil fuels.