Energy Conservation & Efficiency

Department of Energy finalizes water heater efficiency standards

Environmental and consumer advocates celebrate efficient water heater rule because it will cut pollution, save money and save lives

Yazan Aboushi | Used by permission

Today the U.S. Department of Energy finalized a new water heater energy efficiency standard that will reduce pollution, lower utility bills and save lives. 

“The cleanest energy is the energy we never need to use in the first place,” said Johanna Neumann, senior director of Environment America Research & Policy Center’s Campaign for 100% Renewable Energy. “We all use hot water, so we’ll all benefit from the energy savings and pollution reductions that this rule will provide.”

The Department of Energy estimates that, thanks to the energy savings from this rule, American families will save $124 billion on energy bills over 30 years, with many households saving $200 annually.

The Department of Energy also estimates that, over 30 years, the rule will prevent:

  • 90,000 tons of sulfur dioxide from going into our air. Sulfur dioxide leads to soot, an especially harmful type of air pollution, since the small particles easily lodge in human lungs where they can trigger asthma attacks, heart disease, lung disease and cancer.
  • 665,000 tons of nitrogen oxides from being emitted. Nitrogen oxides cause smog, which blocks viewscapes and causes health problems such as asthma and reduced resistance to lung infections and colds.
  • Lots of global warming pollution. Making water heaters more efficient is expected to prevent 332 million metric tons of carbon dioxide and more than 3,000 tons of methane pollution.

With this rule, the Biden Administration is delivering Americans lower utility bills and better health,” said Abe Scarr, Energy and Utilities Program Director at U.S. PIRG Education Fund.

Throughout the rule-making period, Environment America Research & Policy Center and U.S. PIRG Education Fund worked to educate the public through articles and resources, such as the video below.

Let's finalize the proposed water heater efficiency standards

Turning up the heat in our homes shouldn’t turn up pollution

Energy efficiency

Turning up the heat in our homes shouldn’t turn up pollution

The Department of Energy has proposed the first meaningful update in over 30 years to efficiency standards for furnaces and boilers.If adopted, these standards will not only lower energy bills for millions of Americans, but they will also reduce the pollution that’s warming our planet.


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