The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has launched a £6 million competition to encourage social landlords to implement renewable heating.

The competition will be rolled out as part of the extended Renewable Heat Premium Payment (RHPP) scheme which was further extended after the latest delay to the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI).

This new competition, part of the extended Renewable Heat Premium Payment (RHPP) scheme announced in March this year, will help registered providers of social housing to install heat pumps, solar thermal panels and biomass boilers.

National Housing Federation’s assistant director, Helen Williams, explained: “This competition will help build on the great work already done by housing associations to promote renewable heat, particularly in off-grid areas to help reduce bills and tackle fuel poverty.

“The social housing sector has the potential to make a real difference for residents, so it is great this is being recognised. This will help build the required expertise as we move toward the introduction of RHI domestic.”

The scheme will be run by the Energy Savings Trust, who will evaluate potential bids. There will be two bidding windows, the first closing on 28 June 2013 with projects to be completed by March 2014, and the second closing on 27 September 2013, with installations to be finished by June 2014.

Commenting on the competition, energy and climate change minister, Greg Barker said: “This new investment in renewable heat projects will enable social landlords across Great Britain to get innovative renewable heating kit into the homes of their social tenants. This will help save money on energy bills and provide low carbon alternatives to traditional heating systems.

“More than 100 social landlords are already taking advantage of over £13million under our renewable heat competitions. I would encourage more social landlords to rise to the challenge and get involved.”