The government has recently launched an additional tranche (Phase 3) of the Renewable Heat Premium Payment (RHPP) competition for social landlords. The RHPP scheme involves the provision of a payment to subsidise the installation of renewable heating systems in domestic properties.

Technologies such as biomass boilers, air and ground source heat pumps and solar thermal panels are all eligible. Under this new stream of the RHPP, social landlords are invited to bid for grants to support the installation of these technologies in social housing stock.

The main stream of RHPP (Phase 2), which ran from 1 August 2011 to 31 March 2012, generated an underspend which the government is using to launch two further competitions - a Phase 3 for social landlords and a Phase 2 "top-up" competition, which is open to the winners of the Phase 2 competition who are invited to increase their bids. Each of the two new competitions will have a funding pot of approximately £2.5 million. Social landlords can bid for funds up to around £156,000.

Social landlords have until midday on 9 October 2012 to apply. DECC has stated that there have been improvements to the design of the competition since the first round. Encouragingly, it also makes it clear that all bids submitted in the original competition were approved so landlords "can now consider being more ambitious in their proposals". If the funds are oversubscribed they'll be allocated on the basis of the scoring matrix. The scheme is being administered by the Energy Saving Trust who will evaluate bids on criteria such as value for money, type of fuel being replaced, energy efficiency measures to be installed and track record on delivering similar projects. Interested applicants can apply online (see Related links). Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker stated "I would urge social landlords across the nation to apply and take advantage of all this scheme has to offer."