White House Announcement Reinforces the Importance of RTC’s Research and Heat Pumps 

Posted on Posted in News, Press Releases, Recent RTC Policy Activity

Contact: Blaine Collison, RTC Executive Director, 202-669-5950, blaine@renewablethermal.org

Arlington, VA – The Renewable Thermal Collaborative (RTC) applauds today’s announcement by the White House announcing its intent to use $250 million to enable more heat pump manufacturing in America, using Defense Production Act authorities and funded by the Inflation Reduction Act.

The action by the White House aligns with and starts to mobilize the findings of the upcoming RTC Renewable Thermal Energy Vision report that identifies many opportunities to decarbonize industrial emissions in the US, including with heat pumps. Currently, electric heat pumps can meet process heat requirements up to 130⁰C and are expected to reach 200⁰C by 2030 providing a valuable option for low temperature industrial processes. In the US, 60% of thermal industrial emissions are produced through industrial thermal processes below 200⁰C, and 42% are produced below 130⁰C. While the widespread adoption of heat pumps across the US faces several key barriers, switching from natural gas combustion to heat pumps today would produce emissions savings in nearly all states and would lower fuel costs in all but ten US states.

“Heat pumps are a proven technology that pairs well with our build out of U.S. renewable electricity supply,” said Blaine Collison, Renewable Thermal Collaborative Executive Director. “RTC’s recent research shows heat pumps can effectively decarbonize process heat in a range of industrial processes. The action by the White House today provides resources to mobilize this technology in a meaningful way.”

Powered by electricity, heat pumps convert lower-temperature heat sources – including ambient air, waste heat, and renewable sources of thermal energy – to higher temperatures for use in industrial processes. Because they draw on existing sources of heat rather than generating their own heat, they can achieve efficiencies of greater than 300%, which makes them a cost-competitive and effective decarbonization tool in much of the U.S. even at today’s natural gas prices and grid electricity mixes.

The full RTC Renewable Thermal Energy Vision report, which covers a range of industrial sectors and available technologies, will be released via a webinar on November 10th at 1:00pm.

Members of the RTC have stepped up with commitments to use heat pumps in industrial facilities to cut costs and reduce pollution. Procter & Gamble is completing thermal studies at many of its U.S. manufacturing facilities and is likely to implement industrial heat pumps at more than a third of its 26 U.S. manufacturing facilities in the next 5-10 years. Food producer, Mars, Inc. intends to implement industrial heat pump technology in 10 of its 37 U.S. manufacturing sites by 2030. And agriculture commodities company Cargill is actively working to identify appropriate sites and situations to apply the technology.

The RTC is the only coalition of large energy users focused exclusively on decarbonizing thermal energy, including industrial process heating and cooling, as well as the heating and cooling of buildings. RTC members include global industrials, U.S. city and state governments, health care systems, and universities.

The RTC has more than 60 members and sponsors, and is co-convened by the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES), David Gardiner and Associates (DGA), and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

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