The Republican war on energy efficiency will cost the poor the most

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Republicans have taken aim at energy-saving measures. There has been a growing, strong disdain in the Republican Party for energy efficiency. 

Republicans have actively rolled back or blocked measures on energy efficiency at the federal and state levels in recent years, The Guardian reported.

These assaults on efficiency impose a heavy burden on the poorest households in the U.S. 

Programs and regulations designed to help make homes more comfortable and save homeowners and renters money have come under fire. 

By going after these policies, Republicans are also quietly enacting a tax on the poor.

Research shows that poor households spend four times as much of their income on energy as households that are well-off. The research also found disparities held true across races, with minority households spending more than white ones. 

That’s in part because those homes are old and inefficient, with issues such as poor insulation or subpar furnaces, stoves, and water heaters.

A few weeks ago, Republicans were up in arms about the suggestion that gas stoves could be banned in favor of more efficient and safer electric and induction cooktops. Next, they launched at an energy-saving feature on gaming devices that users can opt to use. 

Former president Donald Trump really went for all energy regulations, attempting to obliterate as many as possible. The Trump administration undid regulations that would have made everything from furnaces to shower heads to light bulbs more efficient. 

Trump infamously stoked outrage on the subject of flushing toilets and the hue of LED light bulbs.

At the state level, it is no different. Republicans are taking similar measures themselves as Trump did at the national level. 

After some municipalities in Florida banned gas hookups for new construction, Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill in 2021 that banned gas hookups. And last month, DeSantis also said he is backing a permanent sales tax exemption for gas stoves.

This is despite the fact that electric induction stoves are more efficient than their gas counterparts.

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