Is switching from gas to electrity out of reach for you? You’re definitely not alone! This page will provide resources for interim steps, as well as strategies for policymakers to bring electrification within reach of all residents.
Low-Budget Tips for Residents
Even if you can’t start taking steps yet to move toward 100% electric, you can still take steps to reduce your exposure to the health impacts of gas appliances and shrink your climate footprint.
- Learn about the City of Ashland incentives for switching from gas to electric heating and cooking.
- Make sure the fan over the stove vents to the outside. If it doesn’t, consider having a better exhaust system installed. In general, vents that best captured pollutants use metal hoods to temporarily trap gas and soot so the fan can blow them outside.
- Always use your vent. According to a January 2022 Stanford University Study, “Unlike other gas appliances, such as space and water heaters that are usually placed away from living quarters, cooking appliances directly expose people to their emissions, which can include formaldehyde, carbon monoxide and nitric oxides that can trigger asthma, coughing, wheezing and difficulty breathing, occasionally resulting in hospitalization. Hood use and ventilation help reduce concentrations of nitrogen oxides and other co-produced pollutants in kitchen air, yet surveys show that home cooks on average use hoods for kitchen ventilation only 25–40 percent of the time.”
- Buy a small portable induction cooktop. These units cost between $55 and $160, but the least expensive units may make a buzzing sound and not perform as well. Be sure to use the right kind of cookware. Cast iron, enameled cast iron, and many types of stainless-steel cookware are all induction compatible.
- Try out a portable induction cooktop by checking one out from the Jackson County Library of Things.
- Whenever possible, use an electric kitchen appliance rather than your gas stove. Choose an Insta-pot, an electric tea kettle, electric rice cooker, or any other electric option you can get your hands on.
- Use your rear burners. Studies have shown that stove exhaust systems work better over the two back burners of a four-burner stoves
- Keep children away from gas stoves. Childhood asthma linked to lack of ventilation for gas stoves, OSU study shows
Recommendations for Policymakers
Our state and municipal policies and utility rates need to be designed to ensure that everyone has access to affordable electricity and clean, efficient electric heating and cooking.
Tell the Ashland City Council that you support 100% electrification of Ashland that includes the following policies to ensure that all residents have access to clean, healthy, efficient, and cost-effective electric alternatives. Send your message to firstname.lastname@example.org
Policies that work:
- Utility rate structures need to be progressive
- Incentives, subsidies, and rebate programs for electrification should be directed primarily to low- and middle-income residents
- Incentives should be available for landlords to electrify rental units
- Clean electricity must be as cheap as possible, and cheap relative to transportation and heating fuels
- Heat pumps and induction cooktops need to be affordable at the point of purchase