To cut lung-damaging air pollution from gas appliances in homes, on March 15th regulators at the Bay Area Air Quality Management District will vote on a first-in-the-nation standard that will begin phasing out the sale of polluting heating appliances later this decade.
The new standard would have major implications for regional air quality and public health, particularly for communities of color and low-income communities living on the frontlines of the Bay Area’s air quality crisis. The Air District estimates that by reducing lung-damaging air pollutants, its appliance standard will prevent 15,000 asthma symptom incidents and avoid up to 85 premature deaths every year.
The new appliance standard will apply when a consumer would already be replacing a burned-out appliance (not removing working appliances). And in addition to the substantial health benefits of the standard, analysis by SPUR shows that with the help of current and soon-to-be-available subsidies, low-income, single-family households and owners of multifamily buildings that serve low-income households could actually save money by replacing defunct gas appliances with electric alternatives. This cost savings is in addition to operational cost savings of about $120 per year for single-family homes in PG&E territory.
In addition to health and money-saving benefits, heat pumps and other electric appliances are highly efficient and use a fraction of the energy of other appliances. They will be key to cooling millions of California homes without overloading the electricity grid, making the Bay Area significantly more resilient to the impacts of climate change.
But because the rules threaten fossil fuel interests, the gas industry is lobbying hard to stop these rules from passing. That means we need supporters to turn out in force at the vote and tell the Board that we are ready for a transition to clean electric appliances.
RSVP here and we’ll make sure you get event updates, a public comment guide, and talking points. We’ll also make sure you get the Zoom link, although we strongly encourage everyone who can to attend in person at the Air District headquarters in San Francisco.
Want more information? Contact Melissa Yu: firstname.lastname@example.org.