To AGA Members, clients and industry colleagues, on behalf of all of us at AGA I take this opportunity to wish you a very Happy New Year and hope 2019 brings you excellent health, much fulfilment and great prosperity. The year that lies ahead will have great and very exciting challenges for all of us. It is simply a question of whether we are up to the challenge of seizing the opportunities.
At the 24th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, also known as COP24 held in Katowice, Poland in December 2018, Sir David Attenborough said;
“Right now, we are facing a man-made disaster of global scale. Our greatest threat in thousands of years. Climate Change.”
In addressing world leaders, he urged them to show leadership and contended that the continuation of our civilisations is in their hands. He emphasised that the decisions we make about climate change over the next few years will determine the course of the natural world for thousands of years to come.
In the keynote speech of the AGA Industry Forum held in November 2018, Australia’s Chief Scientist Dr Alan Finkel AO pointed out that Australia was ideally placed to become one of the world’s largest producers of “green hydrogen” which could be used as a substitute for many hydrocarbon fuels.
In December 2017, Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzō Abe reiterated Japan’s commitment to pioneer the world’s first “Hydrogen Society”. The Strategy primarily aims to achieve the cost parity of hydrogen with competing fuels, such as gasoline in transport and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) in power generation. Dr Finkel pointed out that Australia has an opportunity to harness abundant supplies of solar and wind energy to produce “green hydrogen” for export to global markets such as Japan and South Korea, as well as supplying to an ever increasing domestic market.
Under Claire Johnson’s stewardship, we have seen Hydrogen Mobility Australia emerge as the peak body for hydrogen applications in the Australian transport sector. We look forward to working closely with HMA and keeping our readers up to date with news as we see more and more hydrogen powered vehicles appear on our roads.
Similarly, change and very exciting times lie ahead for the domestic and commercial gas sectors. The gas network operators in Australia have recognised that decarbonisation of gas distribution networks through the use of biogas and hydrogen would utilise the existing and highly reliable networks to deliver zero carbon energy. The Future Fuels Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) reflects this vision, focusing on the pivotal role that alternative fuels and the existing gas infrastructure could play in transitioning to a low carbon economy and research is currently being commissioned by the Future Fuels CRC to actively explore these opportunities.
AGA is ideally positioned to support the industry as it faces these challenges and strives to be an important and valued contributor in ensuring the industry achieves the possibilities before it. We look forward to keeping readers abreast of these exciting developments in subsequent NewsFlash publications.
On the home front, I am delighted to report that AGA has continued to assist industry in addressing issues as and when they arise. One such issue was identified following the tragic death of Mrs Sophianopoulos as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning. Subsequent investigations raised issues regarding open-flued space heaters. Accordingly, AGA designed and constructed a purpose-built test room that enabled all open-flued space heaters on the market to be tested and provide industry and regulatory authorities with meaningful data to assess and ensure consumer safety going forward. The AGA laboratory also provides a range of services to industry, whether it be in R&D work, product development, incident investigations or laboratory testing for certification purposes or performance testing of whitegoods.
Continual improvement in customer service has been a key focus in our product certification division and it is very pleasing to note that our efforts are reflected in customer feedback surveys. I would like to thank all of those who took the time to complete the customer survey as your feedback helps us to provide you with the best possible level of service and the best technical expertise at competitive prices.
Over the past year AGA has continued to be a major contributor to improving consumer safety, including through standards development and is represented on numerous Standards Australia Committees. This gives voice to AGA members, customers and industry colleagues at these committees so you can have your say and raise matters of concern or air suggestions to improve Standards.
Another exciting development in 2019 will be the launch of AGA’s new interactive website which will offer AGA members and customers with a range of new options designed to complement their business interests whilst further extending AGA’s reach in promoting consumer safety. We look forward to providing you with more details in the near future.
Once again, thank you for your ongoing support and we look forward to working with you this year and helping you to achieve your goals for 2019.
Managing Director & CEO
As we advised in our April 2018 and June 2018 NewsFlashes, a number of state regulatory authorities have now adopted the “Gas Equipment Certification Scheme – The Rules” from the 1st January 2019 which require:
* All current certifications, and new certifications issued prior to 1st January 2019, must comply with ‘The Rules’ by 1st January 2020, and;
* All new certifications issued after 1st January 2019 must comply with ‘The Rules’.
New requirements which will affect most of our Certificate Holders are summarised below:
Gas Compliance Mark (GCM)
The GCM is a common badge or label and it will be mandatory in relevant jurisdictions once ‘The Rules’ have been adopted by the respective jurisdictions.
The Certificate Holder will be responsible for ensuring that the GCM is displayed adjacent to AGA Badge or AGA License Mark on gas appliances, however, it will not be a requirement for the GCM to be displayed on gas components.
The GCM label may also be purchased from AGA, please contact your Client Manager for more information.
For more information about the GCM, you can download a copy of the Gas Compliance Mark Style Guide from our website Click Here
Declaration of Conformity to Type
This is a new requirement whereby the Certificate Holder must make a declaration that:
* Suitable systems are in place to ensure that gas equipment manufactured and supplied under coverage of an AGA Certificate conforms in every respect to the Certified Design.
* The markings on the gas equipment are consistent with information set out on the Certificate issued by AGA.
* The gas equipment meets the requirements of the standards to which it has been Certified.
* The gas equipment is safe
Suspension & Cancellation of Certificates
‘The Rules’ state that AGA will be required to Cancel or Suspend a Certification in the following cases:
* A request by all Technical Regulators.
* The gas equipment is found to be modified from the Certified Design, and safety or compliance is not able to be established in a reasonable timeframe.
* Post certification surveillance is not completed for the gas equipment within an acceptable timeframe.
* Failure by the Certificate Holder to display the GCM and AGA Badge or License Mark in accordance with ‘The Rules’
* Failure of the gas equipment to comply with changes to requirements and standards within the required timeframe.
Changes in Standards
Gas equipment must comply with any new or amended requirements within 2 years of date of publication of the relevant standard and/or code, unless a specific time frame is specified within the standard.
If you have any questions about how these new regulatory requirements will affect your company, please contact your AGA Client Manager who will be pleased to assist.
We have received overwhelming positive responses regarding the success of the AGA Forum, and again we would like to thank all delegates and sponsors for their support.
If you missed the December 2018 NewsFlash photo link, please click here to view the Forum photos.
AS/NZS 5263.1.10:2019 (Gas appliances, Part 1.10: Gas direct fired air heaters) has been published on 21 January 2019.
Please contact your Client Manager if you have any queries regarding your Certifications.