The Future of Gas Engineers in the Solar & Heat Pump Industry

A question we’re asked a lot

At the Training Academy, one of the questions we are regularly asked is whether or not Gas engineers really have a future in relation to the rapid rise of renewable technologies like solar panels and heat pumps. The answer isn’t completely straightforward.

In this blog, we want to do our best to answer that question along with providing insights into how the skills of gas engineers can be vital in the transition to renewable energy.

Our goal is to paint a clear picture of the opportunities that lie ahead for gas engineers and how they can be an integral part of this exciting and evolving industry.

Is the rise of renewable technologies like heat pumps (above) going to make natural gas installers redudant?

Our roots in gas engineering

As a training academy, we’re experts at upskilling professionals in the intricacies of gas engineering. Our courses have always focused on safety, efficiency, and expertise in handling natural gas systems. We’ve seen firsthand how vital this profession is to the UK – from ensuring warm homes to powering industries.

But the winds of change are blowing. Renewable energy isn’t just a buzzword; it’s becoming a cornerstone of our national energy strategy. Solar energy and heat pumps, in particular, are transforming how we think about heating and power. With the UK’s ambitious carbon reduction goals, this shift isn’t just necessary; it’s inevitable.

When will solar and heat pumps overtake natural gas boilers in the uk?

It’s a question that’s on many minds: when will renewable technologies surpass natural gas in the UK? The answer isn’t straightforward, but we can piece together a realistic picture based on current trends and policies.

Government Goals and Policies:
The UK government has set its sights on a greener future, with a headline goal of achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. This ambition is a major driving force in the shift towards renewables. Also, there’s a significant policy move in play: phasing out new gas boilers by 2035. This decision marks a clear shift away from natural gas in domestic heating.

The Rise of Renewable Energy:
Renewable energy, especially wind and solar, has been gaining ground rapidly. The UK is notably expanding its capacity in these areas, with offshore wind farms making particularly impressive strides. It’s becoming more common to see renewables taking center stage in the UK’s energy mix.

Public Sentiment and Market Dynamics:
There’s a growing public and market movement towards greener energy solutions. People are increasingly aware of and concerned about climate change, which is influencing energy choices both at the consumer and corporate levels.

So, when will renewables overtake natural gas? It looks like the next decade will see a significant shift towards renewable energy. However, fully eclipsing natural gas might take a bit longer. Natural gas could still have a role, albeit reduced, especially as we find ways to use it more cleanly, like with carbon capture technologies.

So is training in natural gas boilers now a waste of time?

Not at all. For our seasoned gas engineers along with people currently studying in the field of natural gas, this evolution might seem daunting. But here’s the good news: your foundational skills as a gas engineer are incredibly valuable and transferable to the world of renewable technologies.

Despite the shift towards renewables, natural gas still plays a significant role in the UK’s energy mix. There remains a demand for skilled professionals in this area, especially for the maintenance and safe operation of existing gas infrastructure.

The full transition to renewable energies won’t happen overnight. During this transitional phase, natural gas will continue to be a key energy source. Skills in this area will still be relevant, particularly in managing hybrid systems that incorporate both gas and renewable technologies.

Many of the skills acquired through training in natural gas can be transferable to other areas of the energy sector, including renewable technologies. Understanding traditional energy systems can provide a solid foundation for understanding energy systems as a whole.

A classroom of students during our popular MLP gas course.

Why Training in Renewable Technologies Matters Now

Although as we mentioned that we still believe it’s important to train in natural gas, it’s also vital as the industry shifts that professionals adapt to remain relevant. Training in renewable technologies ensures that your skills meet the demands of the changing market.

This transition opens up a plethora of new career paths and opportunities within the renewable energy sector. With various incentives and support schemes for renewable energy, there’s a tangible push towards these technologies, making it a wise career investment.

Training in renewables also aligns with a broader commitment to environmental stewardship, a value increasingly important to businesses and consumers alike.

Our Role as a Training Academy

At The Energy Training Academy, we’re not just observers of this change; we’re active participants. We’ve recently expanded our curriculum to include training in solar technology and heat pump systems. Our goal is to ensure that our trainees are not just ready for today’s challenges but are well-equipped for tomorrow’s opportunities.

How We Can Help

At The Energy Training Academy, we’re more than just observers; we’re facilitators of this transition. We have courses now available that provide comprehensive training in solar and heat pump technology, ensuring that our trainees are not just adapting but thriving in this new era.

New training courses: The shift to renewables is a learning curve, and we’re here to guide you through it.

Job placement support: We work with students after their course completion to support them in employment within the renewable sector.

Government policy insight: Understanding the nuances of government policies on renewables is key, and our training programs aim to keep you informed and ahead of the curve.

So are gas engineers still important? Absolutely.

Training in renewable technologies is becoming less of an option and more of a necessity, however it’s important not to panic if you’re currently training in natural gas. Gas engineers are still vital to keeping the nation warm and cosy and this will certainly be the case for quite a while longer.

As the UK government moves to phase out gas boilers, we at The Energy Training Academy in Dalkeith, near Edinburgh, are committed to equipping you with the skills and knowledge to navigate and succeed in this new landscape, if you’re interested in training in renewable technology why not check out our solar pv & battery course or our air source heat pump installer course?

We also have our ever popular MLP course running which teaches you the fundamentals of domestic gas with many transferable skills that can be applied to the renewable landscape when the time comes.

Despite the ever growing need for renewable technologies we believe gas engineers are here to stay for a good while longer.