Gas stoves, a staple in many Americans’ homes, targeted by a new proposed ban despite public claims to the contrary
June 1, 2023
(Washington, DC) – Today, the Functional Government Initiative (FGI) announced lawsuits against three federal agencies, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the Department of Energy (DOE), and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, regarding records about the Biden Administration’s plans to ban new gas stoves.
FGI submitted FOIA requests to those agencies to clarify the Administration’s reasoning and to make sense of seemingly conflicting statements regarding the scope of proposed regulations that could effectively ban gas stoves. With no response within the time limits under the law, FGI is filing its lawsuits to compel their release.
The ostensible spur to government action was a December 2022 research study that indicated 12.7 percent of childhood asthma in the United States is attributable to gas stove use. In a January 2023 interview, CPSC Commissioner Richard Trumka, Jr. stated that gas stoves were a “hidden hazard” and “products that can’t be made safe can be banned.” Later, Trumka clarified in a tweet that the proposed new gas stove regulations would apply only to new ones. Americans who currently have gas and choose to switch to electric would receive a rebate under the Inflation Reduction Act.
CPSC Chair Commissioner Alexander Hoehn-Saric also stated that “CPSC is looking for ways to reduce related indoor air quality hazards. But to be clear, I am not looking to ban gas stoves and the CPSC has no proceeding to do so.” However, a leaked internal memo written by Trumka stated there was sufficient evidence to move forward with a gas stove ban. That memo pre-dated the release of the asthma study, showing that the CPSC’s move to ban gas stoves was already long in the works.
Meanwhile, the DOE proposed its first-ever efficiency regulation on cooking appliances, which could potentially make 50 percent of currently available gas stove models non-compliant. The contradictory actions raise questions over the outside influence and intentions behind the apparent dysfunction driving the Administration’s approach toward gas stoves. Also, there are calls for HUD to ban stoves in public housing, potentially adding another agency to the effort.
Peter McGinnis, spokesman for FGI, issues the following statement:
“The Biden Administration has been anything but clear with the public about its intentions relating to gas stoves. The various efforts to ‘study’ their use has been seen as a predicate for a future ban while other federal agencies have taken actions that fly in the face of what they’ve told the public. FGI intends to find out who is driving the push to regulate or ban gas stoves. The American people deserve to know why they’re home appliance options may be curtailed even further.”