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Guidance for heat pump installations in large commercial buildings will help the U.K. meet its net zero carbon transition

CIBSE and BEIS guidance for large heat pump installations

The Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) and the UK’s Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) have launched guidance, AM17: Heat pumps for large non-domestic buildings

Arup have worked as technical authors under the direction of the CIBSE Technical team supported by a Steering Group comprising industry stakeholders and representatives including developers, landlords, occupiers, designers, installers, operators, manufacturers, and other specialists.

The guidance sponsored by BEIS is free to use for designers, contractors, and consumers, and will enable installations to follow best practice and be delivered safely, legally and to a high quality.

The UK has set a legally binding target to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. Achieving this will require virtually all heat in buildings to be decarbonized, and heat in industry to be reduced to close to zero carbon emissions.  

In the Heat and Buildings Strategy, the UK Government set out its approach to decarbonizing buildings. The strategy details both near-term actions and a longer-term policy framework, bringing together a number of measures to improve energy efficiency and transition to clean heat.

Heat pumps are a proven, scalable technology for decarbonizing heat and will play a substantial role in reducing the UK’s reliance on fossil fuels and ensuring our clean energy independence. We will go from installing around 35,000 heat pumps a year now to 600,000 per year by 2028. This is the minimum market size that will be required to be on track to deliver Net Zero in all future heat scenarios. 

Consumers should be as satisfied or more satisfied with a low-carbon heating system as they are with a fossil fuel equivalent. Poor quality installations of any heating system can lead to over or under heating of properties, dampness, higher energy bills, and at worst could be unsafe.

It is with great pleasure, therefore, that I welcome the publication of this guidance AM17: Heat pumps for large non-domestic buildings, which was commissioned by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. This free-to-use guidance will be of great value to industry and will help ensure that large heat pump installations can be carried out safely and to a high standard.

Lord Callanan, Minister for Business, Energy and Corporate Responsibility

We are delighted to launch this important guidance, which aligns with our drive to link knowledge development and best practice to support the technical improvement and through life performance of low carbon commercial and industrial buildings.” Mike Edwards, Associate Director at Arup highlighted the importance to net zero targets.

Heat pumps will play a crucial role in the UK’s net zero carbon transition. We are very pleased to have led the authoring of this best practice guidance, continuing our strong working relationship with CIBSE and other industry partners. Arup have been designing heat pump systems for large non-domestic buildings for several years- serving developments from Lords Cricket Ground to our own London offices. Our in-depth knowledge of these systems, alongside collaboration with CIBSE, BEIS and the Project Steering Group who have experience of their real-world design, manufacture, installation and operation has informed our authoring of AM17.

Dr. Hywel Davies, Technical Director of CIBSE