NPGA, partners challenge DOE appliance rules with lawsuit

April 18, 2024 By    

The National Propane Gas Association (NPGA) is part of a lawsuit filed against the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) in an ongoing challenge of three DOE rules that would limit access to propane appliances, according to the NPGA.

NPGA says the challenged standards would, in violation of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA), eliminate furnaces and commercial water heaters installed in millions of homes and businesses today. The brief argues that the DOE rules do not follow statutory requirements and fail to meet the necessary legal standard of being technologically feasible and economically justified.

The initial brief, AGA v. U.S. Department of Energy, was filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in collaboration with the NPGA, the American Gas Association (AGA) and other partner organizations, including the American Public Gas Association, Thermo Products and several divisions of Spire Inc.

According to the AGA, DOE’s final rules ban the sale of noncondensing gas furnaces and commercial water heaters. The consumer furnace rule would affect 55 percent of U.S. households and could impact senior-only households, low-income households and small business consumers disproportionately, the AGA adds. However, the EPCA explicitly forbids the DOE from setting standards that would eliminate a specific appliance or product type that is already on the market, the partner organizations argue.

“The law is clear – the Department of Energy is explicitly forbidden to set a standard that eliminates an entire class of appliances from the market,” says AGA President and CEO Karen Harbert in an AGA news release.

Statistical modeling made assumptions about customers and how they determine their energy choice and, as a result, the DOE exaggerated the claimed energy and cost savings of its rules, the organizations add.

The filing can be found here. DOE’s response is due June 10.

About the Author:

Danielle Pesta is the senior digital media manager for North Coast Media, the parent company of LP Gas. She can be reached at

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