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Lack of engineers could stall heat pump transition

FINLAND: Trade associations in Finland have complained of a lack of heat pump engineers and “completely inadequate” training that is not meeting the needs of the industry. 

Finland, like many other countries, is lacking sufficient heat pump engineers in a market that saw sales of 196,000 heat pumps in 2022, up 50% on the previous year. According to the Finnish refrigeration association SKLL (FREA) and heat pump body SULPU, the demand is now being boosted by the rise in energy prices and, in the longer term, the green transition and the aspiration to a carbon-neutral Finland.

The associations insist that the training available is nowhere near enough to cover the ever-increasing need for heat pump experts.

“There is no engineering-level education available at all, and at no university of applied sciences, university or college can you study refrigeration, refrigeration or heat pump technology as a minor subject, let alone specialise in becoming an expert in these technologies,” the SKLL says on its website.

“If something isn’t done and quickly, there won’t be enough experts to meet the ever-growing demand for heat pumps. The industry needs skilled workers, from installers to designers and those in charge of projects,” said SKLL CEO Pauli Tarna. “The matter cannot be left solely to the responsibility of individual educational institutions, but more drastic measures and the participation and commitment of the government are now needed.” 

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