The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has launched a new low carbon heating scheme designed to allow community-based organisations to embrace renewable heating measures by bidding for a share of £8 million under the Renewable Heat Premium Payment (RHPP).

Energy and Climate Change Minister, Greg Barker, explained why engaging with community projects is so important for his department, saying: “Clean green generation at a local level is a key part of our energy future and I hope that communities of all shapes and sizes will get on board and take advantage of all this scheme has to offer.” 

The scheme will support all low carbon heating, such as solar thermal, biomass boilers and heat pumps. The scheme will open to all applicants from community groups as of today. Interested parties must submit a first stage application to the Energy Savings Trust by September 7, 2012.

Phillip Sellwood, CEO at the Energy Saving Trust said: “Working together can make the process of upgrading to renewable heating easier and more affordable for everyone. This scheme will provide a great opportunity for community groups to prove once again that they can have a real impact in reducing carbon emissions and energy costs in their homes, whilst empowering communities to be more sustainable.”

DECC hopes to support between 50 and 100 community projects and will judge applicants on a range of criteria, including the project’s vision, potential benefits to the local area, potential partners and any relevant experience delivering similar projects.

The application form will be available to download from the EST website from and more details can be found on the RHPP page of the DECC website.