Rapid rise in using heat pumps

Long-term progress:
In 2012, new sources of energy, such as solar and wind power accounted for less than 3% of Finland’s energy consumption.
Short-term progress:
In particular, energy production using heat pumps has seen strong growth in recent years.
Progress in relation to targets:
The targets set for energy produced by heat pumps can be met, but the situation looks grim for wind power.

Energy produced through wind power and heat pumps 1995–2012

Wind power and heat pumps

In 2012, around 0.5 TWh of net energy was produced with wind power in Finland, and more than 4 TWh by heat pumps. The electricity consumed by the pumps has been deducted in these figures. Heat pumps include ground source, air-to-air, air-to-water and exhaust heat pumps. In 2012, air-to-air heat pumps accounted for 56% of the net energy produced by all heat pumps, and ground source heat pumps for 39%. Large-scale industrial heat pumps of over 26 kW are not included.
Sources: VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and Finnish Heat Pump Association SULPU. 2013.

Over ten times more energy is now produced using heat pumps than ten years ago. Most of this increase comes from the rapid uptake of air source heat pumps.

The Finnish Heat Pump Association’s statistics show that, in 2012, some 540,000 heat pumps were installed in Finland. More than 400,000 of these were air source heat pumps. The net energy production from all heat pumps totalled approximately 4.2 TWh. In this calculation, the electricity consumed by the pumps is deducted from their heat production figure.

The 2008 Climate and Energy Strategy aimed to raise this net production to 5 TWh by 2020. Two years later, in the 2010 Action Plan for Promoting Renewable Energy Sources, the target was raised to 8 TWh. At the current growth rate, even this higher target seems quite achievable.

But at the same time, wind power has grown more slowly than expected. The 2020 production target for wind power is 6 TWh, and for 2025 it is 9 TWh. Both targets seem very ambitious against the present yearly production of circa 0.5 TWh.

Finland’s National Climate and Energy Strategy produced in 2013 estimates that, in order to achieve the targets set, obstacles to wind power must be removed. These primarily relate to land use planning, not finances.
 

Sources:

  • VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland. 2013.
  • Finnish Heat Pump Association SULPU. 2013.

 

Published 2014-03-26 at 8:49, updated 2016-07-20 at 17:52

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