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Heating and Hotwater Industry Council (HHIC)
Heating and Hotwater Industry Council (HHIC)'s posts

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I was in a House of Lords committee room this week to hear from Francis Egan, CEO of Cuadrilla. He spoke about the developments of their application to explore the Bowland shale reserves in Lancashire and the future of shale gas more generally.

The backdrop to his talk was the on-going debate about our energy use and its supply. Once again this week, we heard politicians comment about energy policy from a position of (how can I put this politely) not the most informed. Or was the lack of clarity displayed purely deliberate?

It is not helped either by the way in which the media report these matters. Energy is more than just about “power”. The use of gas is not limited to generating electricity, indeed more is used for heating homes and businesses. For those of us working in the sector, greater precision in the use of language used by politicians would be really valuable and in having politicians more aware of the terms they use, perhaps they will better understand the issues too.

In light of this, let me restate a key argument about shale gas. We will be using gas in our homes, for industry and probably to generate electricity too, for many years (indeed decades) to come. With North Sea supplies dwindling, the question is where do we get this gas from? If politicians are content to see it coming from the Middle East and Russia, then they should say so. If they think there is merit in the UK producing as much gas as we can, then shale has to be part of the solution. It really is that simple.

Best wishes, 

Mike Foster CE

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"The UK Government needs to fight this decision as it is totally irrational" says Isaac Occhipinti, HHIC Head of External Affairs in response to the European Court decision to force UK to raise VAT on energy saving materials. 

He continued, "It makes little sense to make it more expensive to improve energy efficiency when EU member states are legally bound to carbon reduction targets and so HHIC we will be encouraging the UK Government to fight this decision.

The fight against fuel poverty and to desire to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are ‘social policy issues' and the Commission needs to open its eyes on this.

It also seems odd to be pushing this at this point in time especially when the UK's relationship with the EU is being debated and a referendum on membership is on the cards; pitting the UK against the European Commission on this issue, at a time of rising energy bills is totally irrational."

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Department of Energy & Climate Change, DECC has today published quarterly statistics for the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI), Roger Webb, Director at the Heating & Hotwater Industry Council, HHIC responds

"After 1 year of the domestic RHI being in place there have been 11,149 new installations. This represents fewer than 1,000 a month. We are disappointed by the extremely low take up. HHIC's own statistics show that there are 500 Solar Thermal installations a month, and industry estimates that there are over 1000 heat pumps installed every month, yet these installations do not appear to be using the RHI mechanism. We are worried that this represents a failure of the scheme to appeal to home owners and could indicate that the administrative costs around installation are too high.

Installers, the ‘sales people' for heating systems are also disengaged and this needs to be addressed if RHI is to continue. We urge DECC to revise the RHI to make it more appealing and represent a better return for homeowners."

The Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) is a UK Government scheme set up to encourage the uptake of renewable heat technologies amongst householders, communities and businesses through financial incentives.

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Leading trade association, the Heating and Hotwater Industry Council, HHIC are pleased to announce the appointment of Stewart Clements to the position of HHIC Director. Stewart takes up the position on the 1st June following the retirement of Roger Webb.

Mike Foster Chief Executive of EUA, parent company of HHIC said "Whilst we are very sorry to be losing Roger, Stewart is a more than capable successor having been employed as Technical Director at HHIC since 2013. He will provide continuity for members and our wider audiences but offer a fresh perspective."

Stewart Clements said "I am delighted to be stepping up into the role of Director at HHIC. I will continue to support members and will work with the wider team to further the reputation of HHIC."

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Roger Webb, Director of HHIC, receives lifetime achievement award

Roger Webb, Director at the Heating and Hotwater Council, HHIC received a life time achievement award at the H&V News Awards at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London last night. (16th April) Mr Webb retires in June after serving as Director at HHIC for the last 15 years and received his award to acknowledge his tireless service to the heating industry.

Mike Foster, Chief Executive of the Energy and Utilities Alliance and parent company of HHIC said "Roger has worked within the heating industry for most of his career, spending the last 15 years working for HHIC to promote best practice with member companies, stakeholders and Government officials. This award is well deserved and is just a small way for the industry to say thank you ahead of his retirement."

Roger Webb said "I am both touched and moved to receive this award, it was completely unexpected. I have had the privilege over the years to work with many fine individuals all of whom have contributed to making made this job a real pleasure to do." 

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EUA is delighted to announce the latest in the series of their highly successful ‘Audience with’ events – an Audience with Alastair Campbell.

Following the launch of his latest best-selling book, entitled “Winners, and why they succeed” Alastair Campbell will be sharing what he knows about winning.

As Tony Blair's chief spokesman and strategist he helped guide the Labour Party to victory in three successive general elections. Fascinated by what it takes to win, the book asks; how do sportsmen excel, entrepreneurs thrive, or individuals achieve their ambition? Is their ability to win innate? Or is the winning gene something we can all develop? Drawing on the wisdom of an astonishing array of talented people - from elite athletes to top managers, from rulers of countries to rulers of global business empires - Alastair Campbell uses his forensic skills, as well as his own experience of politics and sport, to get to the heart of success.

Tickets are priced at £90 per person (exc. VAT) which includes a signed copy of Alastair Campbell's book.

The event will conclude with an opportunity to “Ask Alastair” a question of your choice.

The event is exclusive to members and their guests. Places are limited, so book early!


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‘A good first step’ says HHIC in response to DCLG’s announcement that installing carbon monoxide alarms will become law in rented properties

‘It is a good first step' says Roger Webb, Director of the Heating and Hotwater Industry Council, (HHIC) following the announcement made by the Department for Communities and Local Government, (DCLG) that landlords will be required by law to install working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in their properties.

Mr Webb continued,
‘We have been calling for the mandatory installation of CO alarms in all new UK buildings, so making it law in rented properties is a start; but it doesn't go far enough. One fatality or one injury is one too many.

Together with mandatory CO alarms we would like to see the Government fund research into the health impacts of non-fatal levels of CO exposure. We know all about the dangers of passive smoking but our understanding of low levels of CO exposure are minimal and this should really change.'

It is expected that this new law will take effect from October 2015 and will help prevent up to 26 deaths and 670 injuries a year. Landlords will receive help to meet their new responsibilities with the provision of free grant funded alarms provided by the 46 fire and rescue authorities in England.

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HHIC asks the Chancellor for a long term commitment to #RHI #Budget2015

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Only 6% of MPs support move to all electric heating

Only 6% of MPs, when surveyed, support DECC's aims to move to all electric heating. Leading trade association, Energy and Utilities Alliance (EUA) conducted the survey at the end of February and found that over half of all MPs, across all the major political parties strongly opposed the move.

Responding to the survey, Mike Foster Chief Executive of EUA said:
"There is a very real need for DECC to listen to MP's who are the voice of the UK taxpayer. Ultimately they will have to support or oppose policies dreamed up by Whitehall.

Gas can play a role in the long term future of heating, thanks to efficient heating products, like boilers and controls, gas can offer a very real cost effective solution to our heating needs.

EUA will also continue to ask the Government to incentivise the production and use of ‘green gas' including BioSNG, in some areas of the country green gas is already being introduced into the grid with great success. We need to look more closely at this whilst continuing to explore low carbon other solutions such as hydrogen."

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The Heating and Hotwater Industry Council, HHIC is celebrating the positive impact that apprenticeships have on individuals, businesses and the wider economy to mark National Apprenticeship Week 9th - 13th March by showcasing a series of real life apprenticeship career profiles.

Roger Webb, Director of HHIC said ‘The profiles demonstrate how an apprenticeship can provide individuals with; qualifications, career progression, excitement and crucially the experience and opportunity to work in a real life environment - earning and learning.

As an industry we are facing severe skills shortages and apprenticeships offer a way for businesses to upskill their workforce. During National Apprenticeship Week we are delighted to showcase three outstanding individuals: Hannah Hathaway and Tristan Robinson who both studied a business administration apprenticeship and Paige Boland who studied an apprenticeship in advanced engineering.'

You can read their stories at

Follow us using #NAW2015, #GetInGoFar, #Career, #engineeringselfie and #ImAnEngineer
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