Appeals court ruling shields decorative hearth products

February 11, 2013 By    

A near two-year battle pitting the propane and hearth product industries against the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) ended on Feb. 8 when a federal appeals court overturned DOE in its attempt to regulate decorative hearth products.

Regulations proposed by DOE would have classified the products, including decorative gas fireplaces and decorative gas log sets, as direct heating equipment, requiring them to meet minimum efficiency standards.

According to arguments by the National Propane Gas Association (NPGA) and the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association, decorative hearth products were not designed as direct heating equipment and no applicable test method exists to determine their minimum efficiency.

These regulations would have forced the elimination of entire lines of decorative hearth products available to homeowners and homebuilders, contributing to an annual loss of about $21.5 million to the propane industry, NPGA estimated.

About the Author:

Kevin Yanik is the senior editor of LP Gas Magazine. Contact him at kyanik@northcoastmedia.net or 216-706-3724.

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