Today, the American Gas Foundation released a study published by ICF International titled, “Expanding Natural Gas Service to Multifamily Buildings,” focusing on ways in which state and local government, natural gas utilities, and other interest groups have worked to improve access to natural gas service in multifamily structures in their localities. The study assesses regulatory or policy barriers to providing natural gas service to multi-unit structures, and presents possible solutions to help bring the benefits of natural gas to the owners and occupants of these buildings.
In the past decade, multifamily construction has risen from less than 25 percent to one-third or more of newly-built residential dwelling units. Notably, if natural gas technologies were applied across all or part of the nation’s multifamily building stock, unit occupants could realize $2.2 billion in reduced annual energy bills, or about six percent of total energy expenditure for multifamily units in the U.S. Additionally, CO2 emissions would be reduced by more than 20 million tons, nationwide.
To that end, multifamily construction is projected to sustain a high share of new housing construction over the next 20 years. This will include enormous benefits for providing access to natural gas in multifamily buildings—both for the environment and the bottom line of the residents that live there. Understanding that multifamily buildings are made up of a wide-range of building types with unique characteristics and needs is critical when looking to expand natural gas service to this growing market.
The study also highlights utility-led initiatives that have demonstrated success, and describe lessons learned through these efforts to provide insight to other utilities with similar goals to serve these communities.
You can view the report along with the case studies here.