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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2012 Week 7 Hansard (6 June) . . Page.. 2668..


date as clearly my bill is not proposing to exclude them after 2010 and we will wait until 2013—and the exclusion of electric hot water heaters from the replacement market in some areas after 2010 and in all areas after 2012.

The cost-benefit analysis took into account the value of renewable energy certificates, otherwise known as RECs, created by solar and heat pump water heaters, as these are legislated until 2030, but did not factor in any other state, territory or commonwealth rebates. Also, of course, given the date of 2010, it did not factor into it the carbon price which will soon be in place throughout Australia.

The analysis showed that solar and heat pump water heaters with high capital costs but also high energy cost savings or natural gas and LPG water heaters with lower capital costs but also lower energy savings would reduce the water heating emissions of the household by 50 or 60 per cent compared with replacing an electric hot-water heater.

According to the RIS the water heaters that would substitute for the electric types excluded from the market could either cost about the same to purchase in a store—for example, LPG—cost slightly more—that is, natural gas or heat pumps—or significantly more—that is, solar. They would cost less to run—that is, solar and heat pumps—about the same—natural gas, and if a household has low water use, LPG—or significantly more—LPG. Given that we have natural gas, of course, in the ACT, I would be very surprised if there were LPG installations in any significant quantity in the ACT.

It is also important to note that the RIS makes the point that this regulation will have particular benefit for people who are renting. This is because older systems will be replaced by more efficient systems and that tenants will have lower energy costs associated with their hot-water systems.

While no-one will be forced to change their existing hot-water system, when their current one breaks down they will not be able to replace an electric storage hot-water heater with another electric storage heater. So when landlords replace older storage heaters with more efficient heaters, they will replace them with something that will hopefully last longer, and certainly will cost less to run, depending on the types of the new systems.

The RIS assumes the service life of electric storage, gas/LPG storage and heat pump storage is about 10 years and 12 years for the gas/LPG instantaneous solar-electric storage, solar gas with in-tank boost. Solar gas with in-line boost has an expected service life of 14 years.

The secretariat of the Standing Committee on Energy and Resources confirmed with my office that the greenhouse-intensive hot-water phase-out commenced from December 2010. This phase-out is being regulated through state and territory plumbing regulations and, of course, that is what I am seeking to work on in my bill. My office has had some discussion with industry, and I will be seeking further comment on this proposal. I have been encouraged that most people see the advantage of harmonised regulations in this area, and I note that South Australia has had similar regulations in place since 2008.


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