Seattle Limits Natural Gas in New Construction

More cities are banning the use of natural gas in new buildings. Seattle is the latest example.

February 11, 2021, 9:00 AM PST

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell

Seattle Construction

oksana.perkins / Shutterstock

The Seattle City Council approved code changes that ban natural gas for space heating in new commercial and residential construction and prohibits the use of natural gas to heat water in new apartments and large apartment buildings, according to an article by Hal Bernton and David Gutman.

The energy code changes are part of a broader effort to find ways to reduce the city’s greenhouse gas pollution from fossil fuels that drive climate change. Without the code changes, Seattle officials projected the building emissions would have been 12% higher by 2050, when the city government has set a target of being carbon neutral.

The changes allow natural gas for cooking in new buildings, "But electrical outlets would be required near stoves so that electric stoves could be installed later."

A separate article by Shaun Kuo provides additional details and background on the new ordinance:

This legislation would realize a code consisting of the 2018 International Energy Conservation Code with Washington state amendments and Seattle amendments. It will improve the building insulation, space heating, lighting, and renewable energy systems standards for new construction of multifamily buildings taller than three stories and all non-residential buildings.

Seattle joins a wave of cities legislating natural gas out of new construction, including San Francisco and Berkeley.

Monday, February 1, 2021 in The Seattle Times

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