Net zero gas can save costs
15 December 2023
WHEN the Victorian Government recognises that gas supply in your home could be renewable, you know you're on a good thing.
The release on Thursday of the Gas Substitution Roadmap Update identified that LPG can, in fact, be net zero, which can be important to getting the reliable energy and emission reduction mix right.
If you're one of the 356,000 Victorian households using LPG for your indoor cooking, hot water and heating, you can be spared tens of thousands of dollars in costs.
The transition timeline for net zero bioLPG is virtually identical to renewable electricity, without the hefty price tag.
BioLPG is expected in Australia from as soon as 2025-26. It is derived from waste products or as a by-product of biodiesel and sustainable aviation fuel production using the hydrotreated vegetable oil process.
As a one-for-one replacement for regular LPG, it requires no extra capital costs as the same cylinders, pipes and appliances are used seamlessly.
If you don't already have LPG in your home, it is easier and cheaper to switch from natural gas to LPG than to electricity. Making this change typically requires only minor changes by a licensed gasfitter.
Even in rare cases if natural gas equipment can't be made LPG-compliant, or if you're undertaking a new build, LPG appliances retail for about half the price of electrical appliances.
Frontier Economics says the most efficient CO2 electrical appliances will set Victorian families back around $12,000 in appliance and installation costs, save a few hundred dollars over a year on bills, but would only reduce emissions by 9kg per week.
It would take homeowners 12 years to get a return on that investment. Faced with these costs, families might opt for cheaper, though less CO2 efficient, electrical appliances. But emissions from these appliances are 960kg a year higher in emissions than gas.
Frontier has put the full cost of switching to all-electric homes at up to $42,000 when including retrofitting premises to suit electrical appliances and having to upgrade from Phase 1 to Phase 3 wiring to cope with the new electricity load. Victorian families have since told us they have quotes of some $50,000.
Sticking with LPG, or switching to it, can save families a small fortune, while still achieving net zero.
Published in the Herald Sun newspaper on 15 December 2023.
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