Other benefits include GDP growth, more jobs, higher government tax revenues and emissions reductions
OTTAWA, Dec. 9, 2015 /CNW/ - A new report released today concludes that moving homes, businesses, and industrial facilities to natural gas for heating will mean major cost savings for Canadian homeowners and businesses, significant benefits to Canada's economy, and meaningful emissions reductions.
The report completed by ICF International titled "Economic and Emissions Benefits of Expanding Natural Gas Distribution Pipelines to Canadian Consumers" evaluates the merits of expanding natural gas distribution pipelines to communities whose homes and businesses are currently relying on higher cost, and in many cases higher emitting, fuels for heating their homes, water and running appliances. While fuel costs vary significantly among the provinces, on average, annual costs for heating with electricity, propane and heating oil can be two to three times higher than with natural gas.
The report concludes that by bringing natural gas to communities not already served:
- The average new natural gas residential customer would achieve annual fuel cost savings of $1,619 per year, or more than $25,000 over the life of the gas heating equipment.
- Over the 25 year study period, a cumulative reduction in CO2 of 1.87 million tonnes would be achieved, equivalent to removing 405,625 passenger vehicles from the road for one year.
- Over a 25 year period, these expansion projects would add $1.7 billion to Canada's GDP, contribute support of 31,500 net job-years, and increase government revenues by over $600 million.
"Natural gas is an affordable, clean, safe and reliable energy choice for homeowners and businesses," said Timothy M. Egan, President and CEO of the Canadian Gas Association. "But there is a large portion of Canada without access to it. Natural gas utilities want to work with customers, governments, and regulators to secure regulatory flexibility or policy support so that more homeowners and businesses, and the broader economy, can benefit."
The report notes that utilities, customers, and governments need to work together to allow the necessary investments to fund pipeline expansion projects. A number of potential business models and solutions to support the capital needs to connect communities are described in the report.
CGA is the voice of Canada's natural gas distribution industry and its members are distribution companies, transmission companies, equipment manufacturers and other service providers. Natural gas has a central place in Canada's energy mix meeting over 30 per cent of the country's energy needs. Today over 6.6 million customers representing well over 20 million Canadians rely on natural gas for heat and power in homes, apartments, buildings, businesses, hospitals and schools.
SOURCE Canadian Gas Association
For further information: Paula Dunlop, Director, Public Affairs and Strategy, Canadian Gas Association, 613-748-0057 ext. 341 or 613-614-3280, [email protected], www.cga.ca