Gas stove ban is long overdue


Tarique Stevens

Gov. Kathy Hochul recently came out in support of a statewide ban on the sale of fossil fuel-based heating equipment starting in 2030.

The new plan, which proposes a switch from natural gas stoves to electric stoves in new constructions, will quickly prove effective at reducing the state’s emissions and lowering costs for homeowners.

Gas stoves are not only health hazards, but also greatly contribute to global warming – their repeal is long overdue.

The ban originated from concerns raised by the United State Product Safety Commission. A 2017 report produced by the New York City Mayor’s Office of Sustainability found the New York City buildings were responsible for 67 percent of citywide greenhouse gas emissions.

Natural gas based stoves produce harmful gases such as nitrogen dioxide and carbon dioxide. These gases have the potential to leak out when stoves are turned off, contributing to a buildup of fumes.

Thus, homeowners using natural gas for power are putting themselves and their children at risk of health conditions such as asthma and certain forms of cancer.

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, gas stoves account for approximately 13% of greenhouse gas emissions.

Many avid cooks, including Mayor Eric Adams, have not been quick to embrace the ban.

“Those of us who are good cooks — you know, people don’t realize electric stoves can’t give you the right setting,” Adams said. “I’m a good cook. And now, [the] electric stove just doesn’t — it doesn’t cook for me.”

However, it is important to understand that the proposal does not seek to remove stoves from homes but to stop new constructions from being powered by natural gas.

Mayor Adams’s remark also comes off as extremely diminutive of the issue that the installation of electric stoves seeks to address.

The limitation of fossil fuel power is a step in the right direction however, there are a lot of challenges that come with trying to achieve this change.

To support an increase in renewable energy sources a new infrastructure would have to be developed. Powerlines would have to be lain across the state and new grids will have to be made.

This alone does not solve the problem as the state will have to consider if they can produce enough renewable electricity. While switching to renewable energy sources may seem like the easy answer the road to achieving a net zero carbon effect is a long one.

“A phenomenal number of new [renewable energy] projects are going to be necessary,” Michael Gerrard, director of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia University, told the Gothamist. “It’s truly a massive undertaking; we shouldn’t understate how difficult it’s going to be.”