Gas stoves under fire

Published: Aug. 4, 2023 at 6:27 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Gas stove owners might find themselves switching to electric stoves if the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s proposal to ban natural gas-fueled stoves goes through.

“I could see it affecting people, especially on the outskirts of town where they use gas more. I mean, you know they’re gonna have to put in electricity then, or 220 for their ovens,” said Kent Bellerud, owner of Dakota Appliance Inc.

While the ban isn’t meant to take away stoves that are already installed in homes, it would limit what kind of appliances new buildings can use, effectively barring future use of gas ranges that don’t meet certain efficiency standards. Senator John Hoeven says this could be costly for consumers.

“It just would dramatically increase the costs across the board, and that in essence would force people and businesses to phase out gas stoves,” said Hoeven.

The proposed ban says it could potentially help the environment and people’s lungs. A recent study led by researchers at Stanford University found that gas stoves can emit high levels of benzene, a known carcinogen. House Representative Kelly Armstrong says he believes that the proposed solution is too extreme.

“Their job is to make sure that if there’s a faulty product that is a safety violation or a liability problem – like a faulty pilot light or something like that – we didn’t take any of that authority away from them, that’s what their mission is, that’s what they should do. What we just said is that you cannot ban an entire product based on what fuel source it uses,” said Armstrong.

The House recently passed the bill preventing the proposed restrictions on gas stoves. It will need to pass in the Senate before moving further.