Latest News

The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) released a Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) on the phase out of open flued gas space heaters for public consultation from 29 December 2020 to 22 February 2021.

Following detailed consideration of all submissions and progress of the preferred approach (Option 2), fast-tracked Australian Standards will be implemented to phase out open flued gas space heaters. A Statement of Reasons has been prepared regarding the implementation of the preferred approach and other comments and issues raised in submissions.

If you have any queries, please email gas.safety@delwp.vic.gov.au.

Overview

Under certain circumstances, open flued gas space heaters pose a risk of releasing unhealthy and sometimes lethal concentrations of carbon monoxide into buildings. Malfunctioning, poorly or infrequently serviced open flued gas space heaters in residential settings have resulted in the deaths of three Victorians since 2010.

In August 2018, Coroner Hawkins handed down eight recommendations after conducting an inquiry into the tragic death of Ms Sonia Sofianopoulos. The Coroner found that the death of Ms Sofianopoulos was a result of carbon monoxide poisoning, caused by “a confluence of events that proved to be fatal” and made eight recommendations with a key recommendation being that a plan and strategy is implemented to phase out all open flued gas space heaters in Victoria.

In its response to the Coroner's recommendations the Victorian Government supported this recommendation in principle and committed to consider the phase out of open flued gas space heaters through a RIS process to be delivered by DELWP.

Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS)

On 29 December 2020, DELWP released a Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) on the phase out of open flued gas space heaters.

Produced by Deloitte Access Economics, the RIS was informed by consultation with key stakeholders. The RIS identifies the preferred approach to phasing out open flued gas space heaters involves fast-tracking the implementation of changes to the Australian Standards and adopting stringent new safety requirements for open flued gas space heaters by 1 January 2022.

Public consultation on the RIS closed on 22 February 2021.

For more information please see the DELWP website or email gas.safety@delwp.vic.gov.au.

Public consultation closed

DELWP would like to thank all those who participated in the consultation process, provided feedback and made submissions.

DELWP received 17 submissions to the RIS from a range of stakeholders.

Following detailed consideration of all submissions, the preferred approach to phase out OFGSHs through fast-tracked Australian Standards will be implemented. A Gas Technical Regulators Committee (GTRC) Technical Guidance Bulletin, published on 19 May 2021, requires open flued gas space heaters adopt stringent new safety requirements by 1 January 2022.

Submissions can be viewed here.

Statement of Reasons

The Statement of Reasons broadly identifies the issues and themes raised by stakeholders during RIS consultation and provides reasons for the implementation of Option 2 to phase out open flued gas space heaters.

The Statement of Reasons is available for download in the Consultation Outcome section below.

Consultation outcome

Previous consultation

Privacy collection statement

The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) is committed to protecting personal information provided by you in accordance with the principles of the Victorian privacy laws.

All submissions will be treated as public documents and may be published online and/or referenced publicly. The contact information you provide, such as your email address, may also be used to contact you should we need to clarify your submission or provide you with project updates.

If you do not wish to be identified, please ensure there is no information in your submission that could identify you or other individuals. De-identified submissions may be used by DELWP under confidentiality agreements.

If you wish to make an anonymous submission or do not wish to provide your personal information, we will not be able to identify your comment or submission if you wish to access it, make a correction or require technical support.

Should you need to correct the information you provided or gain access to your submission, please contact us via email at gas.safety@delwp.vic.gov.au.

For further information refer to the DELWP privacy policy.