HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme
The Hobbit SE has passed the test!
We are pleased to announce that our Hobbit SE stove has passed the HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme! Our small wood burning stove is Eco Design approved for 2022, DEFRA exempt for Smoke Control Zones, and now it has passed the HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme, so you can be absolutely certain that you are purchasing an environmentally-friendly stove.
What is the HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme?
The HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme was introduced earlier this year as a way to raise the industry’s standards in regards to air quality within the UK. The scheme sets a new benchmark for smoke emissions and small particulate matter, known as PM2.5.
The limits imposed by the HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme are much stricter – the emissions released by an appliance have to be at least 50% less than those already required by DEFRA, the government’s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.
We are proud to say that our Eco Design Hobbit SE stove even exceeds the new, stricter limits that are set out in the HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme. These figures are illustrated in the bar chart below, and you can visit the listing for the Salamander Hobbit SE Eco if you would like to find out more information about the efficiency of our small wood burning stove.
When the Hobbit SE is operated to release the lowest amount of particulates, the amount of particulates that are released into the atmosphere are less than 50% of the limits set out in the HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme! This means that the Eco Design Hobbit SE is capable of releasing less than a quarter of the particulate limits set out in the DEFRA Clean Air Act.
Who are HETAS?
HETAS stands for the Heating Equipment Testing and Approvals Scheme. They are an independent not-for-profit organisation, who work to promote cleaner and safer choices within the stove industry. Their work covers the approval of solid fuel domestic heating appliances, as well as different types of fuel. They also handle the registration of retailers, installers, and chimney sweeps.
HETAS is the official body that is recognised by the UK government, and they work to promote the highest standards for fuel, appliances, and for people working within the industry. This is to encourage the safe, efficient, and environmentally-responsible use of solid fuels, including wood.
You can read more about HETAS here.
Why is the HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme so important?
Small wood burning stoves and stove cooking ranges are becoming increasingly popular due to rising energy prices. People are also installing small wood burning stoves as a self-sufficient form of heating that can withstand power cuts. Therefore, it is important for stoves to be regulated in order to ensure they have a minimal impact on the environment and our air quality.
The main criticism of burning wood is the production of emissions and particulate matter. Despite the misleading claims and misunderstood information that often appears in some forms of media, Salamander Stoves, and the stove industry as a whole, have worked incredibly hard to minimise the impact of small wood burning stoves on the environment.
Whilst the oil and gas industry has delivered £2.3bn in profit every day for the last 50 years, burning wood has certainly endured some unfair criticism. Wood is a renewable, sustainable source of fuel, which is much kinder to the environment than burning fossil fuels, such as gas, oil, or coal. Even electricity from the national grid is mainly generated by burning fossil fuels.
The HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme aims to raise awareness around the benefits of using modern, clean-burning appliances. The scheme makes it easier than ever for consumers to choose and use the cleanest burning biomass and solid fuel appliances, which greatly reduces people’s impact on air quality and the environment.
The HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme improves transparency, and makes environmentally-friendly stoves easier to identify. Calvin May, head of HETAS Technical Services, rightfully described the scheme as “a badge of trust that a ‘cleaner choice’ has been made, which is important as we all strive to reduce our environmental impact.” This initiative demonstrates that appliances can be used to burn fuels responsibly, and they can be operated in a way that reduces emissions.
If we continue to plant more trees and use environmentally-friendly appliances, such as the Hobbit SE, then this will help to ensure that there is clean air and an abundance of renewable and sustainable sources of energy for many generations to come.
How does the new HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme differ to the current HETAS Product Approval Scheme?
The new HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme aims to reform the currently recognised HETAS Product Approval Scheme. The scheme has been updated to highlight appliances with lower levels of particulates, including PM2.5’s. Whilst the HETAS Cleaner Choice Scheme focuses on particulate emissions, it also provides assurance to consumers and installers that the appliance meets all of the relevant regulations in the UK as before, such as safety and performance requirements, correct operation, and correct installation.
This new, rigorous certification scheme can deliver a range of improvements, as each appliance has to meet a number of requirements in order to be receive the HETAS Cleaner Choice approval:
- Fewer emissions – The appliance must have a 50% improvement (as a minimum) on the emission limits specified in the Clean Air Act. Each appliance must have a 50% improvement on particulate emissions over an average of 3 or 5 tests (dependent on appliance) at high and low output.
- Clear labelling, Eco Design compliant, and increased transparency – The appliance must meet all of the essential requirements of the 2022 Eco Design legislation and energy labelling rules, as a minimum. This information also needs to be clearly visible to the customer. The Eco Design emission limits regulate particulate matter (PM), organic gaseous compounds (OGC), carbon monoxide (CO) and nitrogen oxides (NOx).
Increased transparency is also required, as manufactures need to show the minimum seasonal efficiency of the stove. Stoves have to have a minimum seasonal efficiency of 65% in order to be Eco Design compliant. The calculation for the seasonal efficiency of an appliance takes into account the energy requirements throughout the year.
- UKCA/CE marking requirements – The appliance must meet all of the relevant clauses of UKCA/CE marking, including verification that a suitable FPC is in place.
- Improved safety – In order to pass through the scheme, the instruction manuals for each appliance now have to include a much more detailed set of health and safety warnings. The instruction manual for the Hobbit SE has been revised to provide more guidance in regards to safe installation and operation.