In 2021, households consumed 31 percent of the total natural gas used in Germany. Equipped with today's climate protection technology (heat pumps, energy storage, highly efficient insulation), all private households could in principle be decoupled from the gas grid by 2035. In most cases, this is already economically justified today. However, the current rate of 154,000 newly installed heating heat pumps in 2021 is far from sufficient to equip the 19.3 million residential buildings in Germany, including 16 million single-family homes, during this period. Instead, the rate of installed heat pumps would have to jump. Assuming a typical S-curve progression and a target penetration of 14 million residential buildings, up to 1.4 million heat pumps would need to be installed annually, or 5,600 heat pumps per working day.

Manufacturers would have to build overcapacity for a few years, which subsequently cannot be fully utilized until the first wave of mass replacement of old heat pumps occurs with a 15 to 20 year lag. This risks building up overcapacity among manufacturers and the trades. Here, there is a conflict of objectives between the business perspective and the overall social challenge of rapidly decoupling as many private households as possible from fossil fuels. This effect does not only occur with heat pumps, but can also be observed for other climate protection technologies such as energy storage, highly efficient thermal insulation, etc.

In order to solve the scaling problem, SPRIND proposes a program that uses freed-up production capacity of automotive suppliers to achieve the climate protection goals in Germany.

Read more in the position paper (German):