House Passes Bill to End Biden’s Meddling With Appliances

( – As part of its obsession with green issues, the Biden administration has been looking at home appliances. That’s led to a flood of new regulations, making essential products more expensive. Now the House has stepped in to end the interference.

On February 29, the Department of Energy (DoE) brought in new energy efficiency rules for clothes washers and dryers. Department officials claimed the rule change would save consumers $39 billion over 30 years while cutting carbon emissions by 78 million tons. Opponents said compliant washers sometimes needed multiple cycles to get clothes clean. The standards followed a series of other rules for different appliances, and the Energy Department said it planned to update standards for more than 20 types of appliances in all.

Now it might need to have a rethink. On May 7, The House passed the Hands Off Our Home Appliances Act by 212 votes to 195. Seven Democrats voted with Republicans to get the legislation through. It’s a wide-ranging bill that forces DoE officials to consider many more things when setting new standards. These include how updated standards would affect low-income families — an important point because while energy-efficient appliances should save owners money (assuming they do the job as well as older ones) they’re often much more expensive to buy.

The bill also mandates the department consider the life cycle costs of an appliance. This could catch many new models that use less energy but cost so much more that if used for their predicted lifespan they’ll still be more expensive overall.

Representative Debbie Lesko (R-AZ), who introduced the legislation, said “I am saddened that we would need such a bill,” but warned that Biden has “unleashed an avalanche” of regulations on appliances we all need. Lesko is well aware of the effect of these rules. Last year she introduced the Save Our Gas Stoves Act, which passed the House but hasn’t been taken up by the Senate yet, to stop the government from forcing us all to use electric stoves, which cost more to run.

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