Gas stoves are focus of health and safety debate
(KTEN) — Gas stoves have been a cooking staple since they were first developed in the 1820s.
Generations later, there are questions as to whether cooking with gas is the safest way to prepare food in your home.
An appointee on the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission, Richard Trumka Jr., told Bloomberg earlier this month that gas stoves pose a "hidden hazard," as they emit air pollutants, and said, "Any option is on the table. Products that can't be made safe can be banned."
That is not the view of Texoma consumer Kathy Park.
"People love to cook on gas stoves because they say it cooks well and better, so no, I would not agree with that," she said.
Neither does CPSC Chairman Alexander Hoehn-Saric.
"I am not looking to ban gas stoves and the CPSC has no proceeding to do so." Rather, he said, the commission is researching gas emissions in stoves, "exploring new ways to address health risks," and strengthening voluntary safety standards — and will this spring ask the public "to provide us with information about gas stove emissions and potential solutions for reducing any associated risks."
Douglass Distribution propane manager Sean Caney said he believes if proper instructions are being followed, gas stoves are the most logical way to prepare meals in a kitchen.
"It will cook a lot cleaner and quicker," he said. "The main thing is you are using the proper pot size for the burner size."
Caney said he is skeptical that a ban on gas-powered stoves would ever be enacted.
"To convert over to all electric, the price is astronomical... the numbers just are not there," he said.
Across the nation, electric stoves remain by far the most widely used of the two cooking methods. In Texas, 74 percent of households use electric cooking appliances; in Oklahoma it's 67 percent, according to a 2020 U.S. Energy Information Administration study.
You will find more infographics at Statista
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said at a press briefing: "The president does not support banning gas stoves. And the Consumer Product Safety Commission, which is independent, is not banning gas stoves."
Trumka told CNN's Matt Egan that while every option remains on the table, any ban would apply only to new gas stoves, not the gas stoves already in people's homes. And he noted that the Inflation Reduction Act makes people eligible for a rebate of up to $840 to voluntarily switch to an electric stove.