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Ecodesign of local space heaters will significantly improve air quality, which is the biggest environmental burden for people in Europe. Great successes have been achieved here. Modernization through innovative technology reduces particulate matter emissions by up to 90 percent. At the same time, energy efficiency has increased by over 200 percent (source: BMWi). In the past, the efficiency was between 50 - 70 %. Today it is between 80 - 90 %.

Yet, there is a growing gap between the WHO recommendations, legislative will and reality. Here it is important to understand the regulation correctly and to agree on a uniform test method (EN-PME) to ensure proper installation conditions and correct usage. This is the focus of the department of heating and cooking appliances.

The biggest potential for improving air purity lies in overcoming the blockage in replacing old appliances with more effective combined biomass central and single room heating systems. Among other things, the anticipated wave of renovations should start precisely there. The HKI has a strategy for this that systematically fits into the Green Deal.

The problem is that the exchange is increasingly linked to additional requirements (e.g. EEG2 in Germany). This makes exchange unattractive and uneconomic. Each replacement must be individually justified. Exchange barriers must be dismantled.

Industrial policy tends to promote only prestige projects through the electric energy to gas strategy (also known as the hydrogen strategy) or through the battery alliance. Other approaches are in danger of being lost in the confusion of almost 50 targeted legislative measures in the Green Deal, experts and NGOs. But the less market-oriented and technology-open the change is carried out, the less likely it is to succeed. 

Different heating technologies reflect one truth: there is not one single solution. The objective is the same, but the operating conditions vary depending on the outside temperature (physical efficiency), energy price (economic efficiency) and existing infrastructure. 

So if one wants to compare heat pumps, oil and gas heaters and wood-burning stoves, all these factors must be taken into account. For example, a uniform energy label for all heating appliances would only cause confusion. Under the pressure of climate change, however, many aspects are mixed up or remain unconsidered

One example should make those who know better than the markets what the best technologies are take notice: If, for example, one third of one's thermal energy is generated with wood to relieve the central heating system, one saves several hundred liters of heating oil or gas per year - and reduces the emission of carbon dioxide to a considerable extent. This was investigated by the HKI Industrieverband Haus-, Heiz- und Küchentechnik e.V. In order to heat a standard insulated house with a living space of 120 square metres, about 1,800 litres of oil are needed per year. One liter of heating oil causes 3.15 kg of CO2 when it is burnt. Stove owners who replace one third of this amount by heating with wood can thus save about 600 liters and avoid almost 1,900 kilograms of the carbon dioxide that contributes to global warming. In view of the average consumption of a German citizen of around 9,000 kg per year, this measure can significantly reduce one's own CO2 balance.

Such niches are therefore sustainable and climate-neutral – a small part of the solution. Firewood is one of the renewable energies.