(Montreal) The Prévost municipality in Laurentians has become the first city in Quebec to ban the installation of gas systems in new residences that include renewable natural gas (RNG).
To reduce greenhouse gases, the Municipality of Prevost will ban the use of propane and natural gas in future residential and institutional buildings in the municipality by December 31, 2023.
“We are proud to be the first city in Quebec to implement such regulations with the goal of achieving the government’s goal of reducing GHG emissions from building heating by 50% by 2030,” announced Paul Germain, Mayor of Prévost. .
Therefore citizens no longer have the right to install new gas-powered appliances.
However, gas stoves and outdoor cooking appliances (BBQs) are not covered by this new regulation.
Installations as on December 31, 2023 will also “benefit from the vested right and be maintained and repaired without any restriction”.
“Initially, there were some concerns among the population […]But it is incredible how we managed in less than six months to educate our people about the effects of natural gas on GHG emissions,” explained Mayor Germain.
The construction sector (residential, commercial and institutional) is responsible for approximately 10% of GHG emissions in Quebec and corresponds to the third highest emitting sector.
“We’re the first in Quebec, but we want others to be,” said the mayor, adding that the Quebec government’s goal of halving buildings’ GHG emissions before 2030 “isn’t going to happen on its own.”
“Let’s get off the gas!” The coalition”, made up of environmental, union and civic organizations, praised the city of Prevost for its “leadership and commitment” to the energy transition.
“This regulation is definitive proof that decarbonising buildings is possible when local authorities follow best practices,” the coalition wrote in a statement.
In recent years, many municipalities have announced their intention to ban the use of gas in new buildings. For example, in 2022, Mayor Valérie Plante announced that all buildings in Montreal must be powered entirely by renewable energy by 2040 and that new construction must be “zero emissions” by 2025.
Regulation bans Énergir’s RNG
The new regulations should also prohibit new connections to renewable natural gas (RNG) from Energir, the main distributor of natural gas in Quebec.
“Gas delivered by Energir has zero to 2% RNG,” said Mayor Paul Germain, adding it’s hard to see how its use can be justified.
The Énergir network distributes 97% of the natural gas consumed in Quebec and supplies energy to just over 205,000 customers.
According to the company’s website, 80% of its natural gas comes from Alberta and British Columbia and 20% from the United States.
Renewable natural gas (RNG) currently represents only more or less 1% of volumes in Énergir’s network.
The company plans to reach 5% of RNG in its distribution volumes in 2025 and 10% in 2030.
In an email to The Canadian Press, Energir indicated it would “take time to analyze the regulations to determine what the implications are and to clarify certain wording.”