The Biden administration pushes to control how Americans light their homes, cook, and keep warm. But critics say forcing more strict energy-efficient standards on homeowners would hurt, not help, the environment and residents’ pocketbooks.
The Biden administration is moving to take more control over the ways Americans light their homes, cook their food, and heat their families. Incandescent light bulbs are on the chopping block, while the future of gas stoves hangs in the balance, and new rules for gas furnaces are just around the corner.
The Department of Energy (DOE) is expected to soon mandate homeowners install energy-efficient furnaces, purportedly saving consumers billions on their energy bills and cutting down on greenhouse gas emissions over the next three decades. However, critics argue the plan is far from cost-effective and based on faulty assumptions, with between 40%-60% of current furnaces becoming prohibited under the proposal.
DOE Secretary Jennifer Granholm may claim the new rule will save money for consumers, but skeptics like Ben Lieberman, a senior fellow at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, aren’t so sure. Lieberman says the one-size-fits-all approach to efficiency standards raises the upfront costs of appliances, which may or may not be offset by eventual energy savings.
For homeowners with homes not suited for the new energy-efficient furnaces, the costs could be even higher. Richard Meyer, VP of energy markets, analysis, and standards at the American Gas Association, warns that consumers may have to install additional, cost-prohibitive equipment to accommodate the change. As Lieberman points