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Press Release Germany Energy Efficiency

Germany Invests Big to Accelerate Heating Revolution

Focus on heat pump production and climate-friendly construction materials

Heat pumps are all the rage in Germany – and now the government is offering millions in research grants for projects aimed at decarbonizing heating and cooling.

Berlin (GTAI) – Germany’s Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action has issued a call for proposals for research and pilot projects to accelerate the transition to heat pumps and other climate-neutral forms of heating and cooling.

There is no fixed amount for the program, which runs until February 28, 2023, but it will be funded from its annual EUR 600 million budget for energy research. Focuses will include heat pump production, climate-friendly coolants and construction materials, and district heating, industrial-scale heat pumps, seasonal heat storage and new control concepts.

“By supporting heating research, we are investing today in the energy system of tomorrow,” said Minister for Economic Affairs and Climate Action Robert Habeck. “I invite all creative minds from research and industry to contribute their know-how, ideas and efforts.”

The initiative comes at an exciting time for heat pumps in Germany.  On October 10, the Fraunhofer Institute of Solar Energy Systems ISE announced that it had set a new record for efficiency in heat pump refrigeration cycles using propane. The German government hopes augmented state support will lead to more such technological breakthroughs.

The potential for heat pumps in home heating in the most populous member state of the EU is immense. The independent energy research institution FfE Munich estimates that heat pumps could be used in some 17 million of the 19 million German residential buildings.

Consumers are enthusiastic. Sales of heat pumps in Germany increased by 28 percent year-on-year in 2022 according to industry organization bwp, and expected growth in 2022 far exceeds that. All the major manufacturers of heat pumps in Germany have announced expansions – the latest being Daikin, which says it is tripling capacity at its plant in the town of Güglingen.

“Heating and cooling accounts for more than half of the energy consumed in Germany, and the government is throwing its weight behind key technologies like heating pumps,” says Robert Hermann, CEO of Germany Trade & Invest. “That’s only going to accelerate what’s already a record-setting boom in this sector. This is a major opportunity for international companies on the ground in Germany.”

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