Gas Free Housing Developments
In a recent article in Renew Economy (link to article at the bottom) there was mention of a new housing development in the ACT that is going to trial going gas free. Instead of being connected to gas, the homes will have mandatory solar panels and smart meters, and be equipped with efficient electric heating and cooling, and induction cooktops. It seems odd that we have to have a “trial” of going gas free when it is widely known that it is possible and very feasible.
In the article there are two “crazy” mentions that stood out to me as being back to front and antiquated firstly the fact that local planning rules make it compulsory for gas to be connected to new housing divisions?? and secondly the fierce push-back from the gas companies when you don’t want to put gas in. (Obviously goes against their business model to get as many people connected)
“local planning rules make it compulsory for gas to be connected to new housing divisions..”
Recently I have been looking with interest at the new housing developments in Mt Barker (South Australia) to understand modern developments a bit more and try to understand how renewables like Solar PV, Batteries and Geoexchange could be implemented in a district scale like is happening overseas. Whilst looking at the developments a couple of areas that I have noted that could prohibit the shift to a better mix of renewables are the houses don’t really seem like they being built to suit the climate and the new developments have reticulated LPG installed.
The worrying thing is in the design guides for most of the developments it states it is compulsory to have the LPG connected to your home and you have to use it for hot water + one other outlet.
If you are building in one of these developments and have to connect to LPG:
1) Where is your choice? If you want to go all electric you cant?
2) As you can only be supplied by one gas company I would think they have a monopoly?
3) What is the added cost of the land you buy to cover the cost of the gas reticulated system installation for the whole development? Shouldn’t you only pay if you want to connect?
I have had a couple of discussions with people that either themselves or know people that have decided to not build in the new developments due to not being able to go all electric.
We CAN do better and I think this new Development in the ACT is a good catalyst to see change!
The original article from Renew Economy can be found here: