The preferred pathway
How we got here
The ACT Government’s decision has been informed by significant research and analysis, including technical modelling and consumer research.
This transition requires a coordinated and planned approach over the next 20 years. This will allow us to maintain a secure, affordable and reliable energy supply across the ACT. To guide this transition, the government will deliver a new Integrated Energy Plan for the Territory by 2024.
The way we live as we move toward net zero emissions will change gradually. This will bring many benefits for Canberrans.
Renewable electricity will be our primary energy source – replacing gas for heating and cooking and replacing petrol and diesel in our cars. Canberrans will save time and money by being able to charge their electric vehicles at home, and efficient electric appliances have lower running costs than gas alternatives.
If we start working towards the transition now, Canberrans will be able to make a plan to swap gas appliances for electric options. We want Canberrans to consider making their next choice electric and switching when the time is right for them, such as when appliances are due for replacement. There is no urgency to rapidly replace appliances right now.
The ACT Government has previously committed to a number of initiatives to reduce the use of fossil fuel gas in the ACT. This includes preventing new gas connections in certain types of housing developments. This work is underway and complements the Government’s gas transition pathway.
Detailed modelling of different transition options undertaken in 2021 and early 2022 has helped us to understand the impact of different transition options. This includes the impact on gas and electricity consumption, prices and distribution networks. The modelling shows that based on existing consumer trends and government policy, gas consumption is likely to decrease by 60% by 2045, while there will likely be about a 21% increase in demand for electricity. These findings have helped to inform our decision.
Retail gas prices
Modelling by GHD shows that retail gas prices are expected to increase by around 19 per cent over the period 2022-2029, adding approximately $220 to the annual gas bill for the average household in 2029. The overwhelming drivers of gas price increases over this period will be the international price of gas (wholesale costs) and the cost of maintaining and moving gas through the ACT gas network (distribution cost). Modelling by GHD demonstrates that existing government policies are not expected to have a material impact on household energy prices over the period 2022-2029.
The ACT Government has reviewed the outcomes of the modelling and considered the impacts that current policy and market trends will have on Evoenergy, particularly over the next 10 years. The Utility Impact Statement outlines the ACT Government’s position on expected network impacts of the current transition pathway, and indicates government expectations that may be placed upon the ACT electricity and gas distributor, Evoenergy.
Explore the modelling
- Modelling ACT energy systems [PDF 1.5MB]
- Retail price impacts of the gas transition [PDF 544KB]
- Base case report [PDF 8.6MB] (prepared by GHD Advisory)
- Strategic report [26.1MB] (prepared by GHD Advisory)
- Gas transition utility impact statement [PDF 959KB]
Additional reports that informed the decision
- Green gas trading – a tool for zero emissions [PDF 2.5MB] (Prepared by ITP)
- Household energy choice in the ACT – Modelling and analysis [PDF 2.9MB] (Prepared by Acil Allen Consulting
- Electricity and gas networks in the ACT – Current State Assessment Report [PDF 3.3MB] (Prepared by AECOM)
The key reasons for transitioning away from fossil fuel gas use are:
It will be in the interest of ACT energy consumers to gradually transition their homes and businesses off a fossil fuel gas supply at a time that is right for them.
For most Canberrans, this transition will be very similar to the introduction of digital TV or the phase out of leaded petrol. Gas cooking and heating will be replaced with electric options when that household or business is in the market for a new appliance or when appropriate commercial electric options are available.
Key challenges and opportunities
The ACT Government recognises that this transition may be more complex for some consumers, such as low-income households, renters and businesses that rely on gas appliances that have no electric alternatives. We will be investigating how best to support these groups to transition away from gas. Consultation on a regulation to prevent new gas network connections was open during 3 March – 20 April 2023 for community feedback. You can keep updated on future consultations at YourSay Conversations.