Heat pump sales in the EU have increased for four years in a row, reports the European Heat Pump Association. But sheccoBase data shows that the market share of natural refrigerants remains low.
Heat pump sales in the European Union grew by 11.2% in 2017, marking the fourth consecutive year of growth for the EU heat pump market and the third consecutive year of double-digit growth. And several markets in Europe look likely to report continued growth in 2018, according to the European Heat Pumps Association’s (EHPA) newly published ‘ European Heat Pump Market and Statistics Report 2018’ .
“If this trend continues, a doubling of the European heat pump market by 2024 is realistic. As in particular the legal framework is improving, there is good reason to believe that this assumption is a realistic one.”
– Thomas Nowak, Secretary General, EHPA
2017 saw a new sales record, with 1.11 million heat pumps sold that year, surpassing the one million mark for the first time. These heat pumps generate a cumulative total of 17.0 TWh of useful heat, 10.7 TWh of which comes from renewable energy sources. The newly installed heat pumps save 2.7 Mt of CO2 emissions and save 13.7 TWh of final energy. At the same time, they provide 37.4 GW of storage capacity, according to the report.
Regarding the total heat pump stock installed in the European market, the EHPA reports that 10.57 million heat pumps installed generate 181.3 TWh of useful heat, 115.9 TWh of which comes from renewable sources. The stock saves 29.8 Mt of CO2 emissions and 147.9 TWh of final energy. At the same time, they provide 369.2 GW of storage capacity.
According to market research by sheccoBase – the market development arm of shecco, publisher of this website – natural refrigerant-based heat pumps account for an estimated 4-6% of the total stock of the European market.
Heat pumps traditionally use HFCs as refrigerants. The industry has therefore to directly comply with the obligations arising from the F-Gas Regulation. Heat pump options with CO2, hydrocarbons and ammonia already exist and are proving to have increased efficiency in the market covering all ranges of capacity and types of heat pumps in demand. Still, their share in the European market is considerably low, said Klára Zolcer Skačanová, Market Development Manager of shecco.
Natural refrigerants combined with heat pump technology have the potential to provide long-term sustainable, efficient, and regulation-proofed heating and cooling for the European market. Skačanová indicated that industry stakeholders need to work together to increase awareness and eliminate non-technological barriers for a wider uptake of natural refrigerant based heat pumps.