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Biden’s war on your kitchen continues with proposed gas stove ban

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One of the Trump administration’s final public policy campaigns was an effort to – as he put it – “make dishwashers great again.” It was a slogan as over-the-top and eccentric as the former president. However, it did refer to a legitimate public policy concern. For years, the Department of Energy (DOE) had restrictions in place limiting the water usage of home appliances – not least among them were dishwashers. And, thus, one of Donald Trump’s last acts as president was to have DOE create rules to allow a new, legal class of more efficient dishwashers.

The logic was very simple. From 1983 to 2018, the average wash cycle time in the U.S. more than doubled from 69 minutes to 140 minutes. While, the appliances used less water, they ran for twice the time and did not perform as well. Naturally, 98 percent of the 2,244 people who submitted comments to the Trump DOE’s regulatory docket supported the proposal for the legalization of these new dishwashers. It was a commonsense proposal that would save American consumers time – and ultimately money.

Sadly, the Biden administration quickly did away with this rule change, reverting back to the old DOE standards. This once again relegated Americans to choosing between hand-washing their dishes one at a time – which would likely use as much, if not more, water – or running wash cycles that would take twice as long and even then might not get the job done.

Now, it seems the Biden administration’s war on convenience in the home is far from over. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has reportedly been weighing a rule that would ban gas stoves nationwide. This comes after prompting by Democrat Sen. Cory Booker and Democrat Rep. Don Beyer, who urged the agency to do something about gas stoves, claiming they are a “cumulative burden” on minority and low-income households.

BIDEN ADMIN TORCHED BY REP. GARY PALMER OVER POTENTIAL GAS STOVE BAN

This gas stove ban would be the latest proposed action being done in the name of protecting the vulnerable, while actually going after their way of life in a very tangible way. Despite reports that the agency is walking back this plan, it is far from out of character for this administration.

Arguments in favor of a ban are fairly deceptive. On average, gas stoves are 10 to 30 percent less expensive than their electric counterparts. So, yes, low-income communities do utilize gas stoves more frequently than the more financially advantaged classes. However, this also means that gas stoves are a more affordable alternative for low-income communities and – without them – they will be pressed even harder economically. A ban on gas stoves would act as a backdoor tax on those who would have to switch to more expensive models.

The data on which this newfound interest in gas stoves by the federal government stands on shaky ground. In December, the International Journal of Environmental Research (IJER) and Public Health published a meta-analysis, examining the link between childhood asthma and gas stoves in the home. The study analyzed 27 other manuscripts on the subject and combined the results. This is despite the fact that a similar meta-analysis was performed in 2013, which used 41 studies, indicating the IJER analysis may have selectively chosen its data.

Also, the primary author of the IJER meta-analysis works for the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI), a special interest group based in Colorado, which describes itself as a “non-partisan, non-profit organization that works to transform global energy systems across the real economy… powering our homes and businesses without fossil fuels.”

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RMI also received a 4.4 million dollar grant from the Department of Energy. According to Influence Watch, RMI’s top donors are dedicated left-wing groups like the Bloomberg Family Foundation, the Oak Foundation, and the ClimateWorks Foundation. Despite this, IJER cites no potential conflicts of interest in its analyses and conclusions.

Simply, there are a number of reasons American consumers would select a gas stove over an electric one. Gas stovetops give instant heat and have the ability to make immediate temperature changes while cooking. The stovetops are also more sturdy and compatible with a variety of cookware. This makes gas stoves more practical for restaurants as well. A ban could severely damage the business models of many independently owned restaurants, driving up costs which would either increase meal prices or – at worst – put them out of business.

Whatever the reason, consumers and restaurants should be free to make the choices best for them, knowing and weighing the potential risks on their own. The Biden administration should stay true to latest reports and stay far away from any sort of ban on these appliances.


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