Newhouse: ‘Government must keep its hands off our gas stoves’

Legislation sponsored on Monday by U.S. Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-WA) would prevent the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) from finalizing a proposed rule limiting consumer access to gas kitchen ranges or ovens.

“Gas appliances are at the center of many American households — they power our stoves, furnaces, water heaters, and fireplaces. Nearly 187 million Americans use natural gas because it is affordable, reliable, and safe,” Rep. Newhouse said. “The proposed rule by the Biden administration would have detrimental effects on American households, restaurants, and communities across central Washington and the nation.”

Specifically, Rep. Newhouse introduced H.R. 3818, which would prohibit the DOE Secretary from finalizing its proposed rule titled ‘‘Energy Conservation Program: Energy Conservation Standards for Consumer Conventional Cooking Products; Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and announcement of public meeting,” which was published on Feb. 1, according to the bill’s text.

The introduction of the bill follows “increasing momentum at the local, state, and federal level across the United States to disincentivize and forbid the use of natural gas stoves, thereby curbing consumer choice, crippling manufacturers, and increasing energy prices,” the bill says.

The measure details how the DOE on Feb. 1 initiated a Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and published a technical support document that would establish maximum energy consumption standards annually for gas stove tops, “thereby barring manufacturers from selling gas stoves, which consume over 1,204 British thermal units annually.”

On March 7, the Consumer Product Safety Commission published a notice to request information on chronic health hazards associated with gas stove ranges and on March 20, in response to the ongoing efforts to ban the purchase and usage of natural gas stoves, 75 members of Congress sent a letter to the DOE Secretary expressing concerns with the department’s proposed rule and opposing its finalization, according to the bill.

If enacted, H.R. 3818 would dictate that the DOE Secretary may not finalize, implement, administer, or enforce the proposed rule with respect to energy conservation standards for gas kitchen ranges and ovens, or any substantially similar rule, including any rule that would directly or indirectly limit consumer access to gas kitchen ranges or ovens, the text says.  

“I am proud to introduce this legislation to stop the draconian rule proposed by the Biden administration and protect Americans’ wallets, time, jobs, and freedom,” said Rep. Newhouse. “It’s time for the government to stop over-regulating our lives and focus on solutions that will truly benefit the American people and our energy future. And that starts with them getting their hands off our stoves.”

The American Gas Association and the National Restaurant Association support H.R. 3818, which has been referred to the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee for consideration.