With a keen eye on reducing carbon emissions in the UK, the government has announced that it will be giving grants as an initiative to promote the use of green energy for heating. This initiative is known as the RHI scheme. Under this scheme a person or an organisation which uses biomass boilers for heating solutions, will be given quarterly payments for seven years. In this article we will discuss in detail how a biomass heater can be an ideal solution for heating your commercial space.
Compared to systems which are powered by fossil fuels, biomass fuels produce only a fraction of carbon emissions thus making it an environment friendly alternative. Burning fossil fuel releases carbon which was locked up inside them for millions of years back into the atmosphere. On the other hand biomass systems release only the amount of carbon which was recently consumed by the growing plant which is significantly lower than the amount of carbon emitted by burning fossil fuels. In this way the carbon levels are sustainable and consistent in the atmosphere. However, when using biomass systems it is important to ensure that the fuel source is replaced when the fuel is harvested. This can be achieved by employing a rotation system which is advertised as carbon neutral by biomass fuel stockists.
The smoke released from some biomass boilers is much lower than the smoke levels permissible in smoke free zones. Though the number of such biomass boilers is low at the moment, they are expected to be commonly available as the RHI scheme becomes more popular. Under the RHI scheme, boilers which have full accreditation will be exempted in the smoke control areas.
In March 2011 the government proposed to set emission limits on biomass boilers in an attempt to maintain air quality. These limits were later confirmed in a policy that was published for non-domestic RHI. The limits were set at 30 g/GJ for particulate matter and 150 g/GJ for NOx. Hence, all those who intend to apply for the non-domestic RHI post September 2013 were required to keep their emissions lower than these specified limits. Equipments were tested and reports were submitted to the government as proof that their biomass boilers were in complete accordance with the policy for non-domestic RHI. The organisation responsible for accrediting also retain these statistics for conducting audits in the future.
Efficiency of biomass systems
With recent developments in biomass technology, the combustion efficiency and emission levels are almost of the same level as those offered by the best fossil fuel boilers. The biomass combustion systems available these days are modern, highly sophisticated and operate at almost 90% efficiency which is higher than conventional boilers and electric heating systems. In order to maximise the efficiency of biomass boilers the property should also be made energy efficient. It also depends on other factors such as the type of system in use, its fuel and the air flow around the boiler. Thus, if careful attention is paid to making space energy efficient one can extract the maximum output from these systems.
What makes biomass boilers so efficient is the fact that they do not waste fuel and heat. The system is designed in a way that makes disposing of ash quite easy. Even if the fuel was not used in the boiler, its natural expiration would release the same level of carbon into the atmosphere. Hence technically a biomass boiler does not cause an increase in the carbon emission but simply utilises it for a better purpose.
Getting a boiler from a reputed company which specialises in renewable energy will make sure that you get the best from your boiler.
The initial costs of installing an automatic boiler can be around £11,000 whereas installing a manual boiler can cost you around £4,000. However, this cost can be recovered at an average of £600 when it is replaced with an electric heating system. This does not include the payments you are likely to receive from government initiative such as RHI scheme. The fuel cost of biomass boilers is negligible when compared to the running costs of electric heating systems. Using biomass systems can make you indifferent to surges in prices of fossil fuels and electricity.
It makes sense to install a large storage facility for biomass fuel as small amounts of fossil fuel can prove to be more expensive. A large storage facility can typically store several tonnes of biomass fuel thus reducing the recurring cost of acquiring the fuel.
Biomass systems require lower maintenance compared to other heating systems. Usual inspection involves emptying the ash bin, checking the lubrication of bearings and a visual inspection of the boiler and fuel feed system. Many boilers are equipped with automatic flue cleaning which reduces the efforts of cleaning the flue tubes with a brush.
If you own a commercial space and are looking for a way to heat your premises in an affordable and efficient way, then you should consider biomass heating Leicestershire. Hence lower initial and running costs and low maintenance make biomass boilers a perfect heating solution for your personal as well as commercial spaces.