Biden not in favor of banning gas stoves, says White House

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The White House said on Wednesday that President Joe Biden does not support a ban on gas stoves after a federal consumer safety official suggested such a proposal was on the table.

The White House response follows a recent Bloomberg interview with U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commissioner Richard Trumka Jr., the Biden appointee, who called the appliance a “hidden danger” and said “any option is on the table”. table” in relation to regulating them.

“Products that cannot be made safe can be banned,” he added. In addition to the ban, other options include “setting standards on handset emissions,” Trumka said.

Pollutants from gas stoves have been linked to asthma and worsening respiratory conditions. A December 2022 study in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health found that indoor gas stove use is associated with an increased risk of current asthma among children. The study found that nearly 13% of current childhood asthma in the US is attributable to gas stove use.

And lawmakers in Washington have recently argued that Black, Latino, and low-income families are more likely to be affected by these adverse reactions because they are more likely to live near a garbage incinerator or coal ash site or are in a house with poor ventilation. .

A White House spokesperson told CNN on Wednesday: “The President does not support a ban on gas stoves — and the Consumer Product Safety Commission, which is independent, is not banning gas stoves.”

The CPSC has been considering actions against gas stoves for months. Trumka recommended in October that the commission seek public comment on the dangers associated with gas stoves.

But the previous Wednesday, following the Bloomberg report, CPSC President Alexander Hoehn-Saric clarified in a statement that he is “does not intend to ban gas stoves and the CPSC has no procedure for doing so.”

“The CPSC is researching stove emissions and exploring new ways to address health risks. The CPSC is also actively engaged in strengthening voluntary safety standards for gas stoves. And later this spring, we will be asking the public to provide us with information about gas stove emissions and possible solutions to reduce the associated risks,” he added.

While Trumka clarified that “CPSC is not coming for anyone’s gas stoves”, he also added that “the regulations apply to new products”.

While Trumka has previously expressed interest in considering strict regulations on gas stoves, including a ban, the other four CPSC members have not gone as far in their support for enforcing such stringent restrictions on appliances. E&E News reported that in October, Trumka proposed directing agency staff to initiate regulation to regulate gas stoves. But Trumka acknowledged the lack of support at the time and withdrew the amendment. Instead, the commissioners agreed to “gather public opinion on the dangers associated with gas stoves”.

Thirty-five percent of US homes use a gas stove, and the number is as high as 70% in some states like California and New Jersey. Other studies have found that these stoves emit significant levels of nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide and fine particulate matter – which without proper ventilation can raise indoor concentration levels to unsafe levels as deemed by the Environmental Protection Agency.

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