• Coalition Comments on DOE's Energy Efficiency Rule

October 12, 2021

Pursuant to the Department of Energy’s (“DOE” or “Department”) August 27, 2021 notice of proposed interpretive rulemaking regarding the Energy Conservation Standards for Residential Furnaces and Commercial Water Heaters (“the Proposal”),1 the American Gas Association (“AGA”), the Natural Gas Supply Association (“NGSA”), and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce (“the Chamber”) respectfully submit these comments.

In response to a rulemaking petition submitted by AGA, the American Public Gas Association, NGSA, the National Propane Gas Association, and Spire Inc., the Department issued a final rule in January 20212 determining that, in the context of residential furnaces, commercial water heaters, and similarly-situated products/equipment, use of non-condensing technology (and associated venting) constitutes a performance-related ‘feature’ under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (“EPCA”) that cannot be eliminated through adoption of an energy conservation standard.3 The Proposal seeks comments on the Department’s intention to revoke the January 2021 Final Rule and issue an new interpretive rule determining that “non-condensing technology (and the associated venting) does not provide unique utility to consumers separate from an appliance’s function of providing heated air or water, as applicable.”4