Phase Out Gas use in Merri-bek

Gas emissions in Merri-bek in 1020/21 amounts to 20 per cent of total community emissions, according to the Snapshot climate profile. Of that total, residential gas use is 89 per cent. Phasing out gas in our homes will contribute to a substantial reduction in community emissions, and will save us substantially due to increasing gas prices.

How to make the switch to efficient electric appliances and save money

Your gas appliance will breakdown eventually. Are you prepared?

Don’t automatically replace it with another gas appliance. For instance, hot water systems need to be replaced every 10-15 years. Plan now to replace your gas system with an electric heat pump. Learn how to make the switch for all your gas appliances and calculate how much you will save on ‘’. You can get advice from services like the Yarra Energy Foundation; and Renew.

For a new home or major renovation

Going all-electric, with or without rooftop solar, will save money, improve your comfort and health, and help tackle climate change. No gas connection means no annual service charge.

For both cooling and heating use your reverse-cycle air conditioner.

It is at least 4 times more efficient than gas heating, depending on your appliances, saving you money and reducing emissions, and is healthier for your family. Simply find the heat button on your remote control.

For apartment living

You can discuss moving away from gas with your body corporate. If you have a separate townhouse you may be able to replace stand-alone gas units within your property with a reverse cycle air conditioner.

For landlords

Check out minimum energy efficiency standards for rental properties. Switching rental properties to all-electric will lower
tenants’ energy bills. Having happy tenants will help to ensure a stable source of income.

For tenants

As gas appliances come up for replacement, encourage your landlord to consider an efficient electrical equivalent.

For business owners

Going all-electric makes financial sense in the long-run. Most cooking and manufacturing processes can be done as effectively with electricity. Staff and customers concerned about climate change will ask for it.

For improved energy efficiency

Seal draughts, add insulation and upgrade window dressing or glazing.

For more energy efficient measures see:

For cleaner electricity, install rooftop solar panels

They will pay for themselves quickly, especially as you move from gas appliances to electric ones. Check government
assistance available for installing solar panels, batteries, solar hot water etc.

Gas is harming our Health

The gas industry have done an effective marketing on us promoting gas, which is mostly methane, a strong greenhouse gas, as ‘Natural Gas’. In reality it is Fossil Gas, and it is harmful too our health.

In 2021 the Climate Council published the following report: Kicking the Gas Habit: How Gas is Harming our Health

Key Findings:

1. Unconventional gas development, including fracking, is exposing Australian communities to unnecessary health risks.

  • Gas extraction and processing involves many hazardous substances including those that cause cancer, interfere with hormones, trigger asthma and contaminate the local environment through airborne pollution and wastewater.
  • Unconventional gas extraction, including coal seam gas and shale gas, with or without fracking, introduces further risks to human health.
  • There is growing overseas evidence of health impacts on communities living close to gas wells, including on reproductive and respiratory health.
  • Evidence of negative health impacts in Australia is emerging, and while independent research, free of any ties to the gas industry, from here is limited, this is consistent with overseas studies.
  • Continued expansion of gas across the country puts more Australians at risk of adverse health impacts.

2. Burning gas at home can harm our children’s health.

  • Far from the “clean and natural” image that the gas industry markets, the use of gas for heating and cooking indoors carries many health risks.
  • Cooking with gas is estimated to be responsible for up to 12% of the burden of childhood asthma in Australia.
  • A child living with gas cooking in the home faces a comparable risk of asthma to a child living with household cigarette smoke.
  • Better ventilation, including modern extraction fans over stoves, flues for gas heaters and other safety measures like ensuring appliances are properly serviced or opening windows can reduce – but not eliminate – these risks.

3. Children and poorer households are at highest risk from, and most likely to be harmed by, gas production and use.

  • Gas production and use poses additional risks for babies and children. At the production phase there is mounting evidence of associations between living close to unconventional gas extraction and impacts upon early-life development. Within homes, the indoor air pollution from gas used for heating, cooking and hot water disproportionately
    risks children’s health.
  • In addition, poorer households are more exposed to the harmful effects of gas appliances: they are less able to afford proper maintenance, and more likely to be renting or living in public housing where they rely on old, poorly maintained gas appliances.

4. Gas is a polluting fossil fuel. Governments can prevent health issues, and reduce harm, by helping households, and the country, get off gas.

  • While today’s gas may have once been a welcome upgrade from still dirtier fuels such as town gas, wood, coal or kerosene, gas appliances have fast become a poor and polluting cousin to more efficient and healthier electric alternatives.
  • Simple, practical policy steps from governments like ending mandatory gas connections for new residential developments – as has occurred in the ACT – and incentives that help people replace gas appliances with electrical alternatives, will speed up the switch already underway and promote better health outcomes.

5. Clean energy alternatives like solar and wind are the key to a prosperous, healthy future for all Australians.

  • Australia does not need to rely on gas for domestic energy security or for export revenue. As the sunniest and windiest inhabited continent on Earth, Australia is blessed with some of the world’s best renewable energy resources – enough to support both our own energy needs and a large renewable powered export industry.
  • Renewables, like solar and wind, backed by storage, like batteries and pumped hydro, now offer the cheapest sources of electricity for Australians.
  • For households, shifting from as to efficient electric appliances can save money over time and be good for our health, while reducing burdens on the healthcare system.


Victorian Energy Upgrades for households

Solar Homes program:

Heating and cooling for households:

Make the Switch:

Yarra Energy Foundation:

Renew (Alternative Technology Association):

Zero Carbon Merri-bek: All Electric FAQs:

Zero carbon Merri-bek: How to move away from gas and why you should

My Efficient Electric Home Facebook Group:

Consumer Affairs Victoria: Rental properties – minimum standards

Darebin Climate Action Now Guide

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