Page 3198 - Week 10 - Tuesday, 18 October 2022

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MS BERRY: I am confident that that detail is available. I just do not have it with me at the moment. I will take the detail of that question on notice.

MS LEE: Minister, why has the Suburban Land Agency’s target for multi-unit dwellings been revised up to 3,119 for 2022-23, from 2,330 in last year’s Indicative Land Release Program? Where is the government expecting the additional 800 dwellings to come from?

MS BERRY: Again, there is quite a lot of detail in the question that Ms Lee has asked for. I will get that detail and provide it to the Assembly.

MR CAIN: Minister, will the Suburban Land Agency hit its land release target for multi-unit dwellings this year? How did you come up with that target?

MS BERRY: Those targets come through decisions made by the government in the implementation and development of the land release program.

Climate change—gas consumption

MR DAVIS: My question is to the Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction. Minister, we see a lot of macro-analysis that paints a pretty damning picture of climate change and, in particular, how climate change will impact the health of Australians and Canberrans, in particular. Could you tell me a bit more about what the ACT government understands to be the health effects of natural gas and how the government is helping Canberra families get off gas?

MR RATTENBURY: I thank Mr Davis for the question. I think when gas is talked about obviously often the larger focus is on the climate change impacts of burning natural gas, which is very important and why the ACT government has announced a pathway for moving away from the use of fossil fuel gas over time. But the point that Mr Davis picks up around the health impacts is less understood but also very important. Burning gas in our homes does have direct health impacts. This is not something that is widely discussed, but the health impacts of indoor gas use were highlighted in a report last year from the Climate Council called Kicking the gas habit. The report found that household gas use is thought to contribute up to 12 per cent of the childhood asthma burden in Australia. Gas cooktops produce contaminants that increase childhood asthma risk—in particular, nitrogen dioxide and fine particulate matter. Other household uses of gas and gas appliances, such as indoor heaters, also pose a risk. Portable indoor heaters produce similar chemicals and exhaust but also release the potentially lethal carbon monoxide.

Ms Berry: That’s without exhaust.

MR RATTENBURY: Yes. The risk can be reduced, but not eliminated, through the use of properly functioning flues which release the exhaust outdoors. Minister Berry, ahead of the curve, knew exactly where I was going. It is something that I do not think is widely understood, and certainly one of the benefits of transitioning away from the use of fossil fuel gas in the home, where electric appliances do not produce the same contaminants and therefore do not contribute to the asthma burden in the way gas is identified to.

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