AGA Draft Outline of Comments on the DOE New Proposed Rule to Electrify Federal Buildings by Phasing Out On-Site Natural Gas Usage – Comments by January 26 Please.
Recall that in the December 16, 2022 Update we reported on the December 7, U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), announcement of a  new proposed rule in the form of a  Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (SNOPR) to “electrify and cut emissions from new or newly renovated federal buildings. Beginning in 2025, these facilities will be required to reduce their on-site emissions associated with the energy consumption of the building by 90% relative to 2003 levels. In 2030, the standard will fully decarbonize the on-site emissions in new federal buildings and major renovations.” According to the announcement, “Buildings are a major source of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S., and fossil fuels used in federal buildings account for over 25% of all federal emissions. If enacted within the proposed timeframe, DOE estimates that the new emission reductions requirements would save taxpayers $8 million annually in upfront equipment costs. Over the next 30 years, the new rule would reduce carbon emissions from federal buildings by 1.86 million metric tons and methane emissions by 22.8 thousand tons—an amount roughly equivalent to the emissions generated by nearly 300,000 homes in one year.  The new rule aims to accelerate the electrification of the federal building stock by phasing out on-site fossil-fuel usage for end-uses such as heating and water heating.“ AGA staff has been reviewing the SNOPR and the Technical Support Document (TSD) supporting the proposal and attached is a January 18th draft outline of the comments we intend to fully develop for submittal on the SNOPR. Please review the outline and provide us with your comments on it by January 26.  Feel free to provide the draft outline to others within your organization for additional feedback on this very important DOE proposal.  The deadline for submitting comments to DOE on the SNOPR is February 21, 2023. 
Congressional Activities Regarding the Recent Consumer Product Safety Committee (CPSC) Activities on Gas Ranges.
The recent media attention on the CPSC comments to potentially ban gas ranges, since walked back, has resulted in a flurry of congressional activity in support of maintaining the availability of gas ranges.   Attached are January 13th letters sent from House Energy and Commerce Chair Cathy McMorris-Rodgers to Chairman Hoehn-Saric of the Consumer Product Safety Commission and from 87 House Republicans to President Biden in response to administration activity against natural gas and natural gas ranges. The CPSC letter from Chair McMorris-Rodgers includes both technical and safety information on gas ranges , explains the important and effective role of voluntary standards as opposed to federally mandated standards, and cites concerns with the ways a proposed ban on gas ranges without any fact-based justification, will be a major issue for the CPSC to resolve. The letter from E&C Chair Cathy McMorris-Rodgers requests specific details on the CPSC’s work on voluntary standards for gas ranges, technical work/data analysis needed for CPSC staff to make conclusions about the relationship between emissions from gas stoves and indoor air concentrations, and other critical technical inquiries.  Finally, here is a link to related activity from the Energy and Commerce Committee issues:
State Codes Activity Update.
Attached is a weekly feature of the “Friday Update” covering state code calendar activities as presented by the online utility “Fiscal Note,” which is sponsored by APGA and AGA Code and Standards. Please review the update and determine if there are state code activities that impact your service territory or organization.