As part of a nationwide campaign to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, New York State is banning natural gas stoves and heating systems in most new buildings.
New York is at the vanguard of states focusing on emissions from buildings because of the bill that Governor Kathy Hochul and her fellow Democrats in the Legislature negotiated as part of the state budget.
When the phase-in process begins in 2026, newly constructed buildings will be required to forgo fossil fuel equipment in favor of electricity-powered appliances like induction ranges and heat pumps.
The statutory requirement only applies to brand-new construction; it has no bearing on already-existing structures.
“Let me be crystal clear. People with existing gas stoves are welcome to keep them, despite common misconceptions, Hochul told reporters on Tuesday, just before lawmakers started voting on the budget.
She stated, “I want to make sure that it’s not a bumpy road to the transition because this is where our country has to go eventually.”
By Wednesday, the budget was anticipated to be approved.
Republican leaders and other opponents have criticized government initiatives to wean society off fossil fuel-burning machinery, particularly gas stoves, as heavy-handed restrictions on consumer choice.
However, environmentalists assert that homes and businesses must also be addressed if climate goals are to be met.
The requirement for new construction avoids the more contentious political topic of replacing current fossil fuel equipment, at least temporarily.
However, detractors claim it will increase the cost of new construction and put more pressure on the electrical grid while limiting the options available to buyers of recently built homes.
Why can’t people choose how to heat their homes? Republican Assemblyman Phil Palmesano posed the question.
Starting in 2026, for seven stories or fewer structures, the proposal will outlaw installing fossil-fuel technology in new buildings. Starting in 2029, more giant constructions will be prohibited.
There are several exclusions, including those for commercial food restaurants, laboratories, car washes, and emergency backup power.
According to supporters, New York is the first state in the country to pass such a law, even though Washington State recently enacted regulations that call for heat pumps to be installed in most buildings.
According to the Building Decarbonization Coalition, more than 80 local governments in the US have passed all-electric new construction mandates, with many of them being Californian communities.
Next year, New York City will gradually implement its regulations for new all-electric development.
An obvious first step to achieving more general goals for emissions reduction is to concentrate on new development rather than existing structures.
Compared to 1990 levels, New York’s long-term emissions goals call for a 40% reduction by 2030 and an 85% reduction by 2050.