German Government announce plans to phase out gas and oil heating from 2024

The German cabinet have approved a draft bill that would see a ban on the installation of gas and electric heating systems from next year. The bill will mean that new heating systems from 2024 onwards must run on at least 65% renewable energy. 

This move represents a step along the country’s journey towards a complete ban on the use of fossil fuels in heating systems by 2045.

a german flag flying in front of a building

More than 40% of Germany’s annual gas consumption is used on heating, which is responsible for 15% of the country’s greenhouse emissions. 

To support the replacement of old fossil heating systems with new climate-friendly ones, costs will be subsidized by at least 30%, increasing for change-overs made before it becomes a legal requirement and increasing further for people on benefits.

Robert Habeck, the German economy and climate minister said: ‘Existing heaters can continue to operate. Broken heaters can be repaired. But with new heating systems, the heat turnaround must begin now.’ 

Give that he has also recently said: ‘Across the EU, we must keep making ourselves independent from Russia,’ it is clear that Germany would be happy with an outcome that would see them become less reliant on gas.

The phasing-out process will not be cheap, however. The Climate and Transformation Fund have 180bn euros earmarked for 2023 to 2026 and it is thought the phase-out programme will cost around 9bn euros a year.

The news has been greeted with dismay in many quarters. The public believe it will cost them more, the association of local utilities say the time given for the changes it required was too short and so do the German Association of Cities, whose Chief Executive Helmut Dedy said: ‘We know that we now have to set the course for a climate-neutral heat supply. But the goals, no matter how right, come to nothing if there is a lack of craftsmen and suitable heating systems, deadlines are too tight and costs skyrocket and thus people are overwhelmed overall.

‘For many residential areas, especially in new buildings, the heat pump is a good option. Our concern is the many millions of houses in the portfolio. This is because a heat pump currently only works efficiently in highly insulated buildings. And that means old houses need new windows, insulated facades and roofs, large heating surfaces in the floor or walls and affordable electricity prices. None of this will be possible everywhere. And certainly not in a short time. We therefore urgently need longer transition periods for the building stock.’






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1 year ago

Thanks, Paul. And what will happen in the UK, do you know? If gas and oil are banned here too, eventually, what are the alternatives? Expensive heat pumps that won’t suit everyone or wood & pellet stoves that will pollute the air, no matter what the SIA claims to the contrary? Please can we have an update on this?

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