Canberra’s plan to transition
The ACT is preparing to electrify our city and transition away from the use of fossil-fuel gas by 2045. We’re doing this because an all-electric Canberra will allow us to power our city, homes, businesses, and transport in a cleaner and cheaper way.
Fossil-fuel gas accounts for more than 20% of our emissions here in the ACT and the ACT is committed to phasing out fossil-fuel gas by 2045 at the latest. Our plan to transition is to electrify our city where possible and explore the potential for a renewable gas market where electrification is not a good option.
We recognise that fossil-fuel gas will remain an important source of energy over the next 10 years. That is why we are approaching this transition responsibly and sustainably over the next 20 years. We want to enable ACT homes and businesses to save money by taking small steps and making smart climate choices when transitioning appliances at a time that is right for them.
This pathway gives you a way to help you start planning for the transition and commencing the switch. We are asking you to consider making your next choice electric.
You can prepare for a future free from gas, and we’ll help you get there.
Learn more about how the ACT Government made the decision.
Our journey to 2045
In 2020, we secured a nation-leading 100% renewable electricity supply for the ACT. This was a huge achievement for the ACT and a significant step toward our net zero emissions target. Over the next 20 years, Canberrans will gradually transition their homes and businesses off fossil-fuel gas to avoid higher bills and make more savings. The timeline below outlines what you can expect and our plan to help the ACT reach net zero by 2045.
A variety of ACT Government programs and supports are already available to help consumers begin to transition to efficient electric appliances, and access rooftop solar and battery storage.
Find out what to expect during the transition.
Consultation on the regulation to prevent new gas connections in certain developments will begin later in 2022.
Regulation to prevent new gas connections commences.
It’s a good time to start to develop your own transition plan for your home using our personalised transition tool.
The ACT Government will release the first iteration of the Integrated Energy Plan.
More households and business consumers may start to replace their gas appliances with electric appliances when gas appliances stop working. It may take up to 15 years before an appliance needs to be replaced.
You may start to abolish your gas connections once your final gas appliances are replaced. This means the connection is closed off and cannot be reconnected.
Gas prices will start to increase more rapidly and more consumers will transition from gas to electricity, meaning prices will be higher for those who are still on the network.
Remaining consumers who are still connected to the gas network will need to transition to electricity unless zero emissions alternatives are available.
The ACT reaches net zero emissions.
Working with our community
We recognise that the decision to transition the Territory to be powered by 100% renewable electricity is significant. We’ve prepared information to support our households, businesses and industry across the ACT. We’ll update this content regularly as we move further along our transition pathway.
Listening to our community
We will be engaging directly with stakeholders and the community to ensure a fair and equitable transition. This will allow us an opportunity to better understand the challenges and opportunities the transition away from gas presents for ACT homes, businesses, industry and community groups.
We recognise that this decision is significant. This important step will help ACT households and businesses embrace sustainable alternatives to fossil-fuel gas and have better access to affordable, secure, reliable, and safe supply of energy. We’ve prepared information to support our households, businesses and industry across the ACT. We’ll update this content regularly as we move further along our transition pathway.
Demand for gas has been in steady decline for the last five years. This comes as many people are already making the switch from gas to electric appliances and putting more solar on roofs, in order to reduce their energy bills and do their bit for the environment. ACT Government has completed significant modelling to understand how consumer trends and government policies will impact energy use, connections and the gas and electricity networks in the future.
The modelling explored several scenarios to determine what was the most appropriate pathway for the Territory. It considers the ACT’s net-zero emissions 2045 target and ensuring a just transition for the community.
Natural gas is a fossil fuel and accounts for more than 20% of our emissions here in the ACT. The ACT is committed to reaching net zero emissions by 2045 and the ACT is already moving away from natural gas use because consumers are using it less and less.
Natural gas will remain an important energy source over the next ten years. We want to approach this transition responsibly and sustainably over the next 20 years. If you have an appliance that has reached the end of its lifetime and are looking to replace or upgrade, you can do your part by choosing energy efficient systems that use 100% renewable electricity. You will be saving money on energy bills and reducing your carbon footprint.
There is no immediate rush. We are not switching off the gas network overnight. Consumers can replace appliances at a time that is right for them. We are asking the community to consider making their next appliance electric. A good time to move to an electric appliance is when your gas appliance is due for replacement, rather than having to rush on swapping out appliances in 20 years’ time.
The ACT Government already has a variety of rebates and support available including no-interest loans for sustainable upgrades as part of the Sustainable Household Scheme. A range of other resources are available via the ACT Government’s Everyday Climate Choices website.
Households can access a rebate to cover some of the cost of a solar energy storage battery storage solution through the Next Gen Energy Program.
The Sustainable Home Advice Program will help you understand your energy use and the best ways to make your home more sustainable.
If you’re in financial hardship, the Low-income Household Program could help you find practical ways to reduce your energy and water bills.
The Renters’ Home Energy Program provides free, expert advice on the best actions you can take to make your rental home more comfortable and reduce your energy use and costs.
Make The Switch, developed by the developed by the Conservation Council ACT Region, helps Canberra households switch their homes from gas to clean renewable electricity.
The ACT is aiming to transition away from natural gas use by 2045, so you have plenty of time. It may be helpful to think about where you would like to be in five, 10, 15 or 20 years. An example timeline for an average household or business could be:
- Whenever you next need to replace or update a gas appliance, choose an efficient electric appliance instead.
- Over the next 5-10 years: Improve your energy efficiency and consider rooftop solar and battery storage.
- 10-15 years: Replace your remaining gas appliances with efficient electric appliances and have your gas connection abolished.
The ACT Government is planning to introduce legislation to prevent new gas mains connections in 2023. New connections will still be allowed until this regulation is in place.
The contractual process and lead-times for new building construction will be an important consideration in the design and implementation of this policy over 2022 and 2023. It is not expected that a new regulation will impact buildings that have already received Building or Development Approval, unless the construction were to greatly exceed reasonable construction timelines.
If you are building a new home, please consider choosing energy efficient electric appliances. Independent research shows that an all-electric home in Canberra would save $9,000 over 10 years, compared to a home with gas, even taking into consideration the upfront appliance costs.
You can find out more information on the best appliances for your home and Government supports available to help you transition on your energy journey.