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OAKLAND – California Attorney General Rob Bonta joined a multistate coalition in a comment letter urging the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to adopt a new proposal that would tighten energy conservation standards for some conventional cooking products. If adopted, the proposed rule would, for the first time, set performance standards for new gas and electric stoves and strengthen design standards for ovens. According to experts, the proposed standards would net up to approximately $4.5 billion in combined economic, health, and environmental benefits.
“Too often, families are exposed to toxic chemicals from the ordinary kitchen appliances that they use regularly,” said Attorney General Bonta. “Making our cooking appliances more efficient would have enormous potential to lower energy expenses, reduce emissions, and improve health outcomes for ordinary families. I urge the Department of Energy to adopt this commonsense proposal and set efficiency standards for cooking appliances.”
The Energy Policy and Conservation Act requires DOE to periodically review and revise efficiency standards to ensure they are set at the maximum, technically feasible and cost-effective efficiency level in order to save energy and reduce consumer and business utility costs. DOE’s new proposal would significantly increase the required efficiency of residential electric and gas stoves, ranges, and ovens. These efficiency standards would take effect three years after the rule is finalized, giving manufacturers ample time to comply with the new standards. Nearly half of the gas stove models on the market today already meet the proposed efficiency level.
According to DOE, the projected benefits of the proposal would result in numerous economic, health, and environmental benefits, including cumulative emissions reductions of 21.9 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, 2.2 thousand tons of sulfur dioxide, 51.8 thousand tons of nitrogen oxide, 244.9 thousand tons of methane, 0.1 thousand tons of nitrous oxide, and 0.01 tons of mercury.
Joining Attorney General Bonta in today’s letter are the attorneys general of New York, the District of Columbia, Colorado, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, Oregon, Vermont, Washington, The Commonwealths of Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and the City of New York.
A copy of the letter is available here.