Biden does not support banning gas stoves despite safety warning, White House says

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre has said that President Joe Biden doesn’t support a ban on gas stoves.

The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) was reported to be considering a ban on gas stoves over fears they cause indoor pollution linked to asthma in children.

Agency commissioner Richard Trumka Jr told Bloomberg that gas stoves are a “hidden hazard”.

“Any option is on the table. Products that can’t be made safe can be banned,” he said.

The agency has been reviewing the possibility to take action on gas stoves for several months. Mr Trumka said in October that the CPSC should request public comments on the dangers of gas stoves as the pollutants have been connected to asthma and worse respiratory conditions.

CSPC chair Alexander Hoehn-Saric took to Twitter to push back on the media reports on Wednesday.

“I want to set the record straight. Contrary to recent media reports, I am not looking to ban gas stoves and the @USCPSC has no proceeding to do so,” he tweeted.

“CPSC is researching gas emissions in stoves and exploring new ways to address health risks. CPSC also is actively engaged in strengthening voluntary safety standards for gas stoves. And later this spring, we will be asking the public to provide us with information about gas stove emissions and potential solutions for reducing any associated risks. This is part of our product safety mission - learning about hazards and working to make products safer,” he added in a statement.

“When it comes to the question about safety or the effect of gas stoves, that is not something that we can speak to here at the White House,” Ms Jean-Pierre said during a press briefing on Wednesday.

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre holds the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S. January 11, 2023 (REUTERS)
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre holds the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S. January 11, 2023 (REUTERS)

“The president does not support banning gas stoves and the Consumer Product Safety Commission, which is independent, is not banning gas stoves,” the press secretary added. “So I just want to be very clear on that on that.”

“As the chair said today, and I quote, ‘research indicates that emissions from gas stoves can be hazardous and the CPSC is looking for ways to reduce related indoor air quality hazards but to be clear, I am not looking to ban gas stoves and the CPSC has no proceedings to do so’,” she said earlier during the briefing.

“They were independently correcting the record on this for several days now. And so as far as I'm aware, we're not in touch with them on this particular issue and I would refer you to their comment,” she added.

Last month, the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health released a study saying that using a gas stove indoors is connected to a higher risk of childhood asthma, CNN reported.

According to the study, almost 13 per cent of current child asthma in the US is linked to the use of a gas stove.

Mr Trumka told Bloomberg that the CSPC is planning to open public comment on the dangers of gas stoves. Banning the stoves isn’t the only option; other measures include “setting standards on emissions from the appliances”.

In the US, 35 per cent of households have gas stoves with that figure being close to 70 per cent in some states, such as California and New Jersey.

Studies have found that gas stoves produce nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide, as well as fine particulate matter. These substances can, if a home isn’t properly ventilated, rise to levels considered unsafe by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).