Scots are to be forced to rip out their gas boilers and replace them with heat pumps within as little as two years of buying a home under “hugely expensive” plans unveiled by Humza Yousaf’s Government. The Telegraph has more.
Patrick Harvie, a Scottish Green Minister, published a consultation on a new Heating in Buildings Bill aimed at drastically cutting greenhouse gases from homes and business premises.
The blueprint said people buying property should be forced to comply with a “prohibition on polluting heating” so that Scotland could reach its “interim targets” for reducing emissions by 2030.
They would have to make the switch to green forms of heating, such as heat pumps, within a “specified amount of time” following their purchase.
The main consultation document said ministers “think between two and five years is likely to be appropriate” but other assessments published alongside it said “likely two years”.
Although it said there would be no up-front costs for sellers, it admitted that there would be “impacts on the housing market”. Prices for homes with boilers could drop if buyers have to take into account the cost of installing heat pumps.
The consultation also proposed forcing homeowners to install heat pumps at other trigger points, for example by banning them from buying another boiler when their current one stops working.
In a statement to the Scottish Parliament, Mr. Harvie abandoned a previous target for a million homes to replace their boilers by 2030.
He pushed back the timescale by at least three years following warnings that hard-pressed families struggling with a cost of living crisis could not afford it.
A new minimum energy efficiency standard will instead be introduced for all properties, applying to all homes in the private rented sector by 2028 and those that are owner-occupied by 2033.
Private landlords that fail to meet the benchmark in time would be banned from leasing to a new tenant but this would not apply to councils or housing associations.