What is the RHI?

The Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) is the world's first financial incentive scheme designed to encourage the use of heat from renewable energy sources. In principle it is a subsidy for the amount of heat produced (in kWh). However, there are a number of rules and restrictions governing who can claim and the amounts that can be paid.

Am I eligible for the RHI?

At present only commercial installations will be eligible to claim the RHI. However, the government aims to introduce support for RHI domestic installations in phase two of the scheme. The following technologies are supported by the RHI.

RHI metering report
  • Biomass
  • Heat pumps
  • Solar thermal
  • Geothermal
  • Biogas combustion
  • Biomethane injection

The key additional requirements are that the heat is used for an eligible load, that metering arrangements are appropriate and that other grants have not been received.

An Independent Report on Metering Arrangements (IRMA) prepared by a competent and impartial person will be required to claim the RHI for complex systems above 45kW output.

How much will I get from the RHI?

Payments to the installation owner are made for 20 years and are index-linked to the RPI. Payments are made quarterly against heat metered returns.

Tariff name Eligible technology Eligible sizes Tariff level (p/kWh)
Small biomass Solid biomass including solid biomass contained in municipal solid waste (incl. CHP) Less than 200 kWth 8.3 (tier 1)
2.1 (tier 2)
Medium biomass 200 kWth and above; less than 1,000 kWth 5.1 (tier 1)
2.1 (tier 2)
Large biomass 1,000 kWth and above 1.0
Small heat pumps Ground-source heat pumps; water source heat pumps; deep geothermal 100 kWth and above Less than 100 kWth 4.7
Heat pumps 100 kWth and above 3.4
All solar thermal collectors Solar thermal collectors Less than 200 kWth 8.9
Biomethane and biogas combustion Biomethane injection and biogas combustion, except from landfill gas Biomethane all scales, biogas combustion, except from landfill gas 7.1

Payments made to small and medium biomass systems are divided into Tier 1 and Tier 2 payments. Heat generated above a threshold value equivalent to 15% full load running hours (1,314 hours per year) only receives payment at the Tier 2 level.

This is designed to discourage the generation of 'unproductive' heat and encourage energy conservation. For a 150kW boiler the Tier 1 threshold would be 197,100kWh (150kW x 1314 hours).

How do I claim the RHI?

The RHI scheme is administered by Ofgem and applicants will have to submit an application and provide details of the system classification and metering arrangements. In addition, they may also require an Independent RHI Metering Report.

Where can I get further help?

Redcotec engineers are qualified to provide an Independent Report on Metering Arrangements (IRMA) for complex systems should this be needed. We also offer support at any point throughout the process of claiming the RHI. For example we can prepare the technical aspects of the application such are ensuring that metering arrangements are recorded correctly and providing the system schematic drawings that will be required by Ofgem.

Hydraulic schematic
Hydraulic schematic

More information

The external links below provide general guidance on the RHI scheme:

Training courses

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