New York has become the first U.S. state to ban gas stoves from new residential building construction.
The new $229 billion fiscal year budget was approved by Gov. Kathy Hochul and the Democratic-led legislature on Tuesday night and contains a provision that bans gas stoves from new residential buildings. The law also bans furnaces and propane heating.
Under the new law, all-electric heating and cooking is required in new buildings shorter than seven stories by 2026, and in buildings taller than seven stories by 2029 — but is designed to largely impact residential buildings, with exceptions in place for commercial and industrial buildings such as restaurants and stores.
“Just like we had to, a long time ago, transition from coal as your energy source, we do have to transition. There are clean energy alternatives,” said Hochul in an interview on Wednesday with FOX 5 New York.
“It’s going to take time and I want to make sure that New Yorkers don’t get hit hard for the costs, so we’re going to roll this out. But new buildings that are going up, they can go electric, they can do heat pumps,” the governor added.
New studies show that gas stoves are worse for the environment than previously thought, and contribute directly to global warming because they constantly leak small amounts of methane even while they’re turned off. Gas stoves can also emit high levels of nitrogen oxides, which raises public concerns about health impacts and air quality indoors.
“Changing the ways we make and use energy to decrease our reliance on fossil fuels will help ensure a healthier environment for us and our children,” New York Assembly Speaker Carl E. Heastie said in a statement.
But for those worried this new legislation could impact their beloved existing kitchen power, Hochul had some words of relief: existing buildings will not be impacted by the new legislation.
“Everybody who has a gas stove, enjoy it. Keep your gas stove,” said Hochul to FOX 5. “Nobody’s touching your gas stoves!”