New legislation mandates electric ovens and cooktops for new construction
By Alan Wolf, YSN
New York City is joining 56 other cities and towns across the country in prohibiting new homes and offices from installing gas-fueled ovens and ranges.
The latest gas attack was signed into law last month by outgoing mayor Bill De Blasio and will go into effect at the end of 2023 for most buildings under seven stories and in 2027 for taller structures. The new rules will also affect water heaters, furnaces, and space heaters.
The changeover is expected to cut about 2.1 million tons of carbon emissions by 2040 — the equivalent produced by 450,000 cars each year — while saving consumers several hundred million dollars in new gas connections. The ban will also minimize the risk of gas explosions and exposure to the formaldehyde, carbon monoxide and toxic nitrogen dioxide that’s released by stovetop flames, studies show.
“If the largest city in America can take this critical step to ban gas use, any city can do the same,” the outgoing mayor said in a statement. “This is how to fight back against climate change on the local level and guarantee a green city for generations to come.”
The Big Apple joins a growing coterie of electrified communities including San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, and Cambridge, Mass., that are looking to limit fossil fuel consumption at the local level. But the bans should have a minimal impact on the appliance industry, as gas ranges, though coveted by cooks for their high searing heat, are only found in about a third of U.S. households.