How Biomass works

Biomass boilers burn wood fuel in the form of pellets, chips or logs to heat up the water in a connected buffer tank.

 

Hot water from the buffer tank can then be fed, via highly insulated pipes (heat main) to as many different locations as required.

 

The heat is then transferred via heat exchangers connected into new or existing hot water and heating systems.

 

Biomass heating can use fuel in the form of logs, pellet or wood chip, all of which are considered carbon neutral and an alternative to fossil fuels.

 

Why Biomass?

Wood pellet biomass boilers are an environmentally friendly, safe and convenient way of heating the home, using wood pellets as fuel.  However, they differ from traditional solid fuel boilers. Apart from the green aspect, the units are fully automatic and behave more like an oil or gas boiler, using advanced controls which cleverly regulate the amount of fuel being delivered to the burner to match the heat demand on the boiler. The fuel is fed to the burner via an auger connected to the adjacent pellet store/hopper. This can, in turn, be automatically supplied from a bulk pellet/ wood chip store which can vary in size.

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How it makes money for you

Biomass heating is supported by the governments Renewable Heat Incentive scheme which is a subsidy designed to support homeowners and commercial properties wishing to find low carbon heating alternatives. The concept has some similarities with the more widely known Feed in Tariff however there are some key differences as well

 

Renewable Heat Incentive falls into two schemes:

 

Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive, which provides support for 7 years for eligible homeowners for more information no the domestic RHI scheme follow this link https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/ofgem-publications/86165/drhifactsheetanintrototheschemev20feb2015web.pdf

 

Non Domestic Renewable Heat incentive, which is a 20 year scheme for eligible commercial or complex systems. More detail can be found on the scheme here https://www.ofgem.gov.uk/environmental-programmes/non-domestic-renewable-heat-incentive-rhi

 

How are you paid by the RHI scheme?

 

For the Domestic RHI, you need an EPC with a Green Deal Assessment and you are paid based on an Estimated or deemed heat use on a quarterly basis

 

The Non Domestic RHI is based on metered qualifying heat and has strict rules around metering to ensure the scheme only pays for eligible heat. Vale Energy can assist with RHI applications as part of the process.

 

The RHI is administered by OFGEM, with payments being made on a quarterly basis for all eligible heat produced from systems. The tariffs work by paying a higher Tier 1 rate for the first 1314 hours of use annually, with a lower Tier 2 rate for additional hours. This ensures that the system is not abused. The RHI tariffs are linked to the RPI and guaranteed for 20 years.

 

A key point to note with the RHI is that if you have to replace the boiler within the 20 (7 for domestic) year tariff period, you will have to re-register the system with OFGEM. This means that the new boiler will only qualify for the RHI rate at that time and not that of when the original boiler was installed. It is therefore crucial to ensure that when you are selecting a Biomass boiler that it will at least last the duration of the tariff period.

 

Which Biomass solution is right for you?

 

Vale Energy offer four kinds of Biomass solution for our clients and each has benefits relative to a customer’s own needs – you can find more information on these choices on our fuel types page:

 

  • Wood chip boilers
  • Wood pellet boilers
  • Log Boilers
  • Combination Pellet and Log Boilers

 

Biomass boilers do not suit every client’s property which is why it is important to undertake a detailed site survey and discuss how you wish to use heat on the site as well as how to design a system.

 

Benefits of biomass

 

The key benefits biomass brings:-

 

  • Cheaper fuel, particularly if fuel is grown on site from woodland
  • RHI income – Farmers, landowners and commercial property owners see this as an opportunity for diversification income on top of their yields from their core business
  • CO2 savings vs fossil fuels, giving your business tangible green credentials

 

Freedom from the fossil fuel trap which is linked to energy security

 

A Typical Biomass Journey with us...

 

1. Initial call

2. Survey

3. Feasibility and initial estimate

4. Detailed design

5. Planning permission

6. Place orders and plan installation

7. Installation

8. Commissioning and handover

9. RHI application processed

10. Maintenance

 

 

Non Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive Biomass (RHI)

 

The Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) is a Government funded payment over 20 years to encourage investment in specific renewable heat generating technologies. Payments vary according to the technology, heat generated and tariff rate. Tariff rates are linked to the Retail Price Index, thus representing a real return on investment.

 

The following summarises key elements of the existing scheme:

 

Scheme

 

Tariffs can see a significant return on investment.

 

Payments based on actual heat usage, system size and tariff. See tariffs for individual technologies below.

 

The scheme is administered by Ofgem; for further information see click here or you can emailRHI.Enquiry@ofgem.gov.uk or telephone 0845 200 2122.

 

Installations eligible

 

Non-domestic applications include commercial, public sector and not-for-profit organisations. This includes bed and breakfasts and multiple dwellings sharing the same heat source.

 

Biomass boilers, ground source heat pumps and solar thermal systems are all eligible, amongst others.

 

Retro fitted systems and new builds, properties on and off the gas grid are all eligible.

 

For installations up to 45kW only, MCS accredited installers and products are required. Installations must be heat metered with RHI compatible meters.

 

 

Tariff Reviews

 

DECC review the tariffs and take up quarterly.  When the budget is exceeded it may trigger a tariff digression.    To view the Ofgem information on tariffs, and to view the tariff tables click here.   To view DECC's factsheet on tariff reductions (degression) click here.

 

For your own interpretation and up to date information see http://www.gov.uk/

 

 

Contact:-

Vale Energy

97c Bowen Court,

St Asaph Business Park,

St Asaph. LL17 0JE

 

01745 592182

glyn@valeenergy.co.uk

If you require any further information about our products and or services, fill in the form on this page and one of our team will contact you as soon as possible.

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