Gas Users Organisation
To promote the interests of domestic gas consumers
To combat man-made global warming, the UK has committed to become carbon neutral by 2050. To achieve this objective will require significant changes to energy use, and there is currently consultation and debate about the scope and nature of the required changes.
The aim of the Organisation is to advocate the interests of the 24 million households who use domestic gas. Natural gas is used domestically for space heating, domestic water heating and cooking.
Domestic gas consumers benefit from a fuel that is clean, convenient and cheaper than alternative energy sources.
Removing domestic gas from households would dramatically increase fuel costs for most families. The Organisation will research and publicise comparative costs to inform public debate.
The Organisation opposes any manipulation of the cost of natural gas to domestic gas consumers by taxation.
The Organisation opposes the government prohibition on gas being used for heating of new properties from 2025, and opposes new housing developments being built that are isolated from the gas supply.
The Organisation proposes a moratorium on any significant government decision on the future of the gas industry until there has been a thorough review that takes into account the interests of domestic gas consumers.
The Organisation will campaign to ensure the security of gas supplies to domestic consumers.
Natural gas (methane) is the fossil fuel with the lowest carbon footprint. There is a solid scientific foundation* for continued use of natural gas as a transition fuel towards a carbon neutral future. The Organisation will seek to engage in a constructive way with environmental campaigners to find common ground.
Replacing domestic gas with electricity for space and water heating and for cooking across the UK would require a dramatic increase in electricity generating capacity, and based on current and foreseeable technology this could not be achieved by renewables alone. The Organisation will research and publicise the technical and engineering challenges of replacing domestic gas with electric power, and the cost benefits of the achieved carbon emissions reduction.
Replacing the UK’s legacy gas infrastructure for domestic space and water heating with electrically powered alternatives would be a massive engineering challenge. The perceived advantages have been overstated, and the technical and capacity constraints have been underestimated. The Organisation will research and publicise the technical and engineering challenges in order to inform public debate.
Replacing the UK’s legacy gas infrastructure to domestic households would be extremely expensive. The Organisation opposes the cost being passed to domestic consumers. The Organisation will research and publicise the anticipated costs.
Given the low carbon emissions from natural gas compared to other fossil fuels, the additional expense to domestic consumers would not be justified on a cost benefit basis, until significant carbon emissions reductions had first been achieved in transport and electricity generation, and by other behavioural and technical changes that reduce emissions.
The Organisation will research and publicise alternative, more cost effective paths to carbon emissions reductions, that are not at the expense of domestic consumers.
The gas industry is highly regulated with a strong commitment to safety, over 74000 companies and over 120000 engineers are registered with Gas Safe. The sector provides high skilled employment, distributed right across the United Kingdom, which makes a valuable and permanent stimulus to the economy. Consumers have very high confidence in the integrity, safety and reliability of the domestic gas service industry. The Organisation will campaign to draw attention to the continuing economic benefits of the gas service industry.
*For example, Pacala and Socolow of Princeton University, “Stabilization wedges: Solving the Climate Problem for the Next 50 years with Current Technologies”, in the Journal, Science, 2004.
GAS USERS ORGANISATION C.I.C.
Private company limited by guarantee, registered in England and Wales.
Company number 12573966
Registered office, 5 Elm Hayes, Corsham, Wiltshire, SN13 9JW