Last month a seismic shift occurred in the US clean energy space. The humble heat pump — an electric heating and cooling system that is three times more efficient than gas-fired equipment — was credited with canceling a major trans-state gas pipeline project. It’s hard to imagine this David and Goliath matchup. But heat pumps are quietly winning over US businesses and households as their efficiency and reliability become more widely known and prices continue to drop, in some cases by as much as 50%.
One building at a time, electric heat pumps are helping to tip the US energy scales from fossil fuels to renewable energy, something that has been true outside of the States for years. CleanTechnica.com reports: “As of 2019 heat pumps accounted for 40% of new single-family residential construction and 50% of new multi-family buildings.“
This holds true locally as well. CORE’s rebates for heat pump installations jumped 600% between 2016 and 2019 while this year is booming: on track to double the year prior.
“We’re at a nexus,” says CORE’s Program Director, Marty Treadway. “People are looking for carbon-free solutions. When 75% of your utility usage is gas (which has a large carbon footprint), it’s pretty compelling to find an electric solution that is triple the energy efficiency.”
UPDATE: Want to get the low-down? Holy Cross Energy and Walking Mountains Science Center held webinar on heat pumps from August 26. Check it out here!
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