Press Release

Welch, Shaheen Lead the Call for Improving Water Heater Efficiency Standards to Lower Utility Costs, Reduce Emissions, and Improve Energy Security

Sep 28, 2023

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senators Peter Welch (D-VT) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) led a group of Senate colleagues in calling for the Department of Energy (DOE) to expeditiously finalize proposed water heater efficiency standards, to lower utility bills, improve energy security, and reduce emissions.  

“Energy efficiency is essential to American energy security. The Energy Information Administration reports that electric resistance water heaters account for approximately one-fourth of the average household’s total electricity usage. The efficiency upgrades resulting from the proposed standards would cut this consumption in half, lowering electricity demand and reducing stress on the energy grid,” the lawmakers wrote. “We thank you again for your continued commitment to energy efficiency and support the Departments efforts to incorporate energy efficiency into America’s clean energy future.” 

DOE has estimated that once they go into effect, the new standards will save American consumers nearly $200 billion on utility expenses over the next 30 years. They would also save an estimated 501 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions over 30 years—roughly equivalent to the combined annual emissions of 50% of homes in the U.S. 

Senators Welch and Shaheen were joined by Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Angus King (I-ME), Ed Markey (D-MA), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Bernie Sanders (I-VT),  Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), and Ron Wyden (D-OR).  

To read the letter, click here.