Attacks on Natural Gas

Rumors are flying! Natural gas is being targeted by the federal government and environmentalists.

Rumors are circulating about a federal ban on gas stoves. Consumer Product Safety (CPS) Commissioner Richard Trumka Jr told Bloomberg: “This is a hidden hazard. Any option is on the table. Products that can’t be made safe can be banned.”  A spokesperson, Patty Davis, for the commission, told The Denver Gazette that no regulatory proposal has been made. It would also involve a lengthy process. “Agency staff plans to start gathering data and perspectives from the public on potential hazards associated with gas stoves, and proposed solutions to those hazards later this year.” Commission Chair Alexander Hoehn-Saric tried to put out the fire created by Mr. Trumka Jr by issuing a statement, “Research indicates that emissions from gas stoves can be hazardous, and the 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.”

According to researchers at the Rocky Mountain Institute as well as other health organization studies more than 12% of current childhood asthma cases in the US can be contributed to gas stove use. No parameters were given on how this determination was made.

Denver‘s city council just voted on modifying the building codes. Fortunately, and maybe temporarily, they did not outlaw gas stoves in homes, but they are requiring commercial and multifamily buildings of greater than 25,000 square feet to electrify their buildings. Supporters say it will improve health and safety, but most of all will transition Colorado away from fossil fuel energy. Critics state the energy load that powers electricity also comes from natural gas so full elimination is not possible. Natural gas supporters argue that natural gas has helped the US cut down on its green house gas emissions. Other changes are coming in 2025 and 2027 as the city council is swayed by the environmentalists.

Meanwhile in Colorado Springs, the city just 70 miles south of Denver, their Sustainable Energy Plan consists of six brand new modular natural gas generation units which are set to be commissioned into service by the end of the first quarter 2023. The Colorado Springs Utilities, which oversees all utilities within the city limits, expects these units to be on the electric grid for the next 25 years or longer. These units are duel-fuel capable with natural gas as the primary fuel and diesel fuel as the backup. Not only are they cost effective to operate and require limited staff resources, the units will come online in a matter of minutes.

Although one of the two cities in the same state is following the trend of the federal government the other one is taking a different approach. Only time will tell which one is more sustainable.

How do you feel about the government eliminating the natural gas stove? Next it could be the gas fireplace, gas hot water heater and perhaps the gas BBQ. Somehow an electric BBQ doesn’t seem appealing. Now it is natural gas. Will propane be next?

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