By Mark Valentini, Director of Legislative Affairs
Since 2019, PHCC has been monitoring policy developments around the country as they relate to natural gas. It started with various municipal governments across California passing local ordinances that would prohibit natural gas installations in new construction, with an outlook on phasing out the use of natural gas in current infrastructure as part of a broader effort to decarbonize the energy grid by the 2030s. Other local and state governments across the country were inspired to follow suit, as we have witnessed in Oregon, Washington State, Maine, Nevada, New York and Massachusetts to name a few. The Biden administration, while not outright seeking to ban natural gas, is pushing policies that at the very least would disincentivize its continued use.
Several states have pushed back, including Arizona, Kansas and Oklahoma, and more recently in Pennsylvania and Michigan, where state governments are introducing or have already passed legislation that would prohibit municipal governments in those states from passing ordinances that limit consumer energy choice.
In Pennsylvania, Senate Bill 275 preempts localities from imposing restrictions on utilities provided based on energy source. In Michigan, House Bill 4575 preempts localities from prohibiting the use of gas-powered appliances. These bills will allow residents to continue to have natural gas as an energy supplement, and prevent them from having to make costly upgrades to their fixtures or electrical systems.
PHCC National supports legislation that promotes a diverse national energy portfolio and consumer energy choice that includes the use of natural gas. We are working with a coalition of stakeholders from various industries across the country to push back against natural gas bans at all levels of government.
Director of Legislative Affairs , PHCC-National Association