Now, as a heat pump distributor I understand the MCS scheme and its foibles and have to deal with it on a daily basis. For the uninitiated its simple - MCS is a scheme where the design application and installation of renewable technologies is scrutinised to insure that the standard is high and the installation and design is correct.
Just to spice it up, it also has a number of procedures you have to adhere to all of which involve lots of paperwork. Getting MCS accreditation for your company is a long and expensive process; it will cost more than £2,000 to get accredited. If that's not enough, to get a bit of kit onto the MCS list it torture - it takes months, factory visits, two weeks of testing and thousands of pounds.
So why bother with MCS in the first place? The answer is simple. Until a year ago, MCS heat pump installers got a grant of £1,500 towards the installation. This was scrapped in April 2010 to save money; now it will be replaced by a new scheme called the RHI.
RHI is an over-complicated scheme rumoured to be starting in June 2011, but now almost certainly not till later. It is a grant that will contribute towards your heating run cost. Just to clarify the current position, we don't yet know when it will come in, we don't know how to claim it, we don't know what kit qualifies, we don't know how much it will be and we don't know how to calculate it. Apart from that we know everything about it.
There will be a grant one day maybe.
It has always been everyone's understanding that, to qualify for the RHI, you will have to have the kit installed by an MCS installer. I note with interest this from the MCS website: http://www.microgenerationcertification.org/installers/what-is-the-mcs
The Renewable Heat Incentive will provide cash back to individuals, business and communities for renewable heat generation. The Government has indicated that it might be linked to MCS products and installers.
What a waste of time - the RHI MIGHT be linked to MCS, I'm glad I bothered with the paperwork.
If this is the action of the greenest Government ever, then heaven help us; next they will be charging students tuition fees!