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Blue state pressuring residents to abandon gas stoves, furnaces, other appliances

Governor Kathy Hochul holds a roundtable on hate crimes and public safety, on Nov. 13, 2023, in New York City. (Susan Watts/Office of Governor Kathy Hochul/TNS)
February 20, 2024

New York Democratic Governor Kathy Hochul’s fiscal year 2025 budget proposal doubles down on the state’s attempt to transition away from natural gas utilities and appliances in an effort to advance the state’s climate agenda.

According to data journalist Katharina Buchholz, a majority of New York residents use gas stoves for cooking. Additionally, residential heating statistics from 2021 show that over 58% of New York residents use gas to heat their homes. Finally, many New York residents also use gas-powered hot water heaters. The governor’s budget proposal for 2025 could impact the ability of New York residents to use these gas appliances.

The New York governor and the state’s Democrat legislature passed a ban last spring on gas stoves and furnaces in new residential buildings that will go into effect in 2026 for buildings with seven stories or less, while buildings over seven stories tall will have until 2029 to comply with the ban.

According to Fox News, the Democrat governor’s new budget proposal would continue the state’s transition away from gas by incorporating provisions from the “NY HEAT Act,” which has also been called the “Affordable Gas Transition Act.” Hochul’s office claimed the Affordable Gas Transition Act provisions included in the proposal would support “responsible, equitable, and effective gas system transition planning.”

While the governor’s administration has claimed that the budget proposal would not force New York residents to transition away from gas utilities and appliances, Fox News reported that the bill would give state regulators the power to push for a transition away from gas indirectly. According to Fox News, the budget proposal would require utility companies to incentivize customers to transition from gas utilities and push customers to discontinue gas services.

READ MORE: Blue state could soon jail people over gas-powered lawnmowers

Hochul’s budget also proposes the elimination of New York’s rule that currently requires utility providers to install a gas hookup for any customers located within 100 feet of a gas pipeline.

Following the announcement of the governor’s 2025 budget proposal, Earthjustice, a climate advocacy group, released a statement obtained by Fox News, applauding Hochul’s budget proposal for giving the Public Service Commission the “authority and direction to align gas utility regulations and system planning” with left-wing climate policies.

While the New York governor’s budget proposal has been praised by climate activists, Republican lawmakers in the state, labor unions, and power providers have warned that the state is not currently able to support such a fast transition away from gas-powered energy. The New York Independent System Operator and the New York Power Authority have cautioned that Hochul’s budget proposal could have devastating consequences for the state’s electric grid.

“We need to have enough alternative energy that is readily available and affordable across the state before proposals like the NY HEAT Act are considered,” Mario Cilento, New York State AFL-CIO’s president, said.