*Update* Activists Disregard Will of Voters In Latest Gas Stove Ban Attempts

UPDATE (3/21/24):

The International Code Council’s Board of Directors approved the appeals from AGA and other energy industry associations, removing the electrification provisions of the code to the non-mandatory appendix. The decision became public on Wednesday, March 20, 2024, and affirmed that “the scope and intent governing the 2024 IECC prohibited the inclusion of measures that did not directly affect building energy conservation within the base of the draft 2024 IECC.” The Board’s determination marks the conclusion of the 2024 IECC’s development and the code’s finalization.

As American Gas Association President and CEO Karen Harbert states:

“The ICC Board of Directors made the right decision for the United States to be more energy efficient in removing these deeply problematic provisions from the code base. This is further confirmation of how natural gas and our delivery system are fundamental to protecting America’s energy security and achieving our environmental goals and economic prosperity. This ICC decision is the next in line of a long chain of events including the protection of fuel choice in 25 states and the rejection of a natural gas ban in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals that indicate the future of natural gas in continuing to deliver efficiency, reliability, and affordability for American families.”

Original Post:

‘Electrify Everything’ advocates are once again attempting to circumvent voters to pass backdoor natural gas bans. That’s because time and again voters have expressed that they want consumer choice when it comes to how they heat their homes and cook their food. In fact, many Americans want to keep their gas stoves.

Source: Grist, December 2023

The latest example of this can be seen in the International Code Council’s (ICC) – the nonprofit standards organization that develops model codes and standards for new construction – 2024 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC). The current IECC draft is being challenged by a diverse range of stakeholders because it leaves natural gas out of the equation in favor of electrification mandates that disregard the importance of energy efficiency.

The American Gas Association and other energy industry associations, alongside housing organizations and the ICC’s Northeast regional branch, are appealing the 2024 IECC on several measures, including:

  • The 2024 IECC’s electrification measures are outside the scope of the ICC;
  • the draft fails to include alternative perspectives;
  • and electrification is not the same as energy efficiency which does not require fuel switching to see improvements.

AGA President and CEO Karen Harbert explained to Fox News:

“They’re incentivizing electrification and discriminating against the natural gas industry by excluding it from being part of the code. That really is anticompetitive behavior.

“If you are about energy efficiency, you should say, ‘We are about energy efficiency however you get there’ — being fuel neutral. But in this case, they are prescribing the way to get there, and it only includes electrification.”

Backdoor Gas Bans

eNGOs’ ICC strategy is a continuation of the backdoor gas bans that they perfected at the local level where very niche building code updates and mandates are used to essentially ban natural gas. This strategy has been employed by more than 100 municipalities across the United States and Building Electrification Initiative’s Jenna Tatum even admitted to S&P Global:

“I think that the term gas ban might not work…But I think that a policy that encourages or requires all electric new construction works everywhere.”

Harbert clarified to Fox News that this process is being repeated at a larger level, purposely using the “very wonky, very technical” IECC process to pass their all-electrification agenda.

Bottom Line

Pursuing bans by less than legislative means has become the dominant strategy for electrification advocates after the Ninth Circuit struck down the city of Berkeley’s direct ban and upheld the decision on appeal.

No Comments

Post A Comment