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Scots boiler scrappage launched

A new boiler scrappage scheme, which will boost the heating industry as well as cutting average energy bills by £190 a year, has been officially launched in Scotland.

Up to 5,000 homes will receive £400 towards the cost of a new boiler under the scheme, according to housing and communities minister Alex Neil.

However, only households whose boilers convert less than 70% of fuel into heat will be eligible for the scheme.

Mr Neil said: 'We are providing an economic stimulus for the heating industry, supporting jobs and helping it get through this financially difficult time.'

A Government spokesman said that replacing nearly 5,000 boilers will save around 5,600 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year - the equivalent to heating the water for seven million baths.

The scheme was welcomed by plumbers and environmentalists.

Scottish and Northern Ireland Plumbing Employers Federation director Robert Burgon said: 'Installing a new system will not only help the environment, it will also help save money on their heating bills.

'Like many other industries, the plumbing and heating sector has been badly hit by the recession and the scheme will prove a boost to many of our businesses.'