By Irina Slav – Sep 23, 2022
California has made yet another step on its way to complete reliance on renewable energy by banning the use of gas-powered water heaters and furnaces from 2030.
The proposal to ban these products was approved unilaterally by the California Air Resources Board yesterday, Bloomberg reports.
“We’re really hopeful that this is the beginning of a domino effect and other states will follow California’s lead,” said Leah Louis-Prescott, an associate at RMI, a clean energy non-profit.
The ban does not cover gas stoves for now but many cities in California are seeking to discourage the use of gas stoves and a switch to electric-only appliances.
Now, with the gas furnace ban, Californians will have to familiarize themselves with heat pumps: all-electric heating appliances that are gaining popularity in Europe as an alternative to traditional heating methods.
Touted as the way forward in heating technology, heat pumps are praised for efficiency and emission footprint but they do have constraints such as temperature and they add to electricity consumption, which could strain a grid designed for a certain—lower—level of consumption.
Earlier this month California moved to ban the sales of internal-combustion engine cars from 2035. While climate activists have welcomed the news, there are some issues, such as the fact that EVs in California, which is the biggest EV market in the States, only make up 15 percent of new car sales, per figures from the California New Car Dealers’ Association.
Going from 15 percent to 100 percent in 11 years would be challenging for a car industry that is already struggling to find enough raw materials for the millions of EVs companies have committed to manufacture.
Meanwhile, California continues to get some 40 percent of its power from fossil fuels. This needs to change if the state is to hit its own target of a zero-emission grid by 2045.
By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com
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