Berkeley can’t enforce natural gas ban, and neither can SLO

January 6, 2024


Berkeley can’t enforce its natural gas ban, and neither can San Luis Obispo or more than a dozen other cities in California. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals on Jan. 2 declined a full court review of an opinion that found Berkeley’s ban on natural gas hookups in new construction is illegal, ruling in favor of the California Restaurant Association.

Unless the Supreme Court decides to review the case, the ruling against the ban will become final.

On April 17, 2023, a federal appeals court unanimously struck down Berkeley’s natural gas ban, an ordinance the SLO City Council mimicked even though it was under a legal challenge.

Instead of directly banning gas appliances, which violates the Energy Policy and Conservation Act, Berkeley circumvented the act by prohibiting the construction of gas lines in new construction. By prohibiting gas lines, Berkeley attempted to displace the authority of the U.S. Congress, according to the ruling.

On April 18, 2023, the SLO City Council voted unanimously to suspend its natural gas ban for new construction while directing SLO City Attorney Christine Dietrick to find out how Berkeley plans to move forward.


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Sadly to many do not think of consequences, no not lemmings, people. Now get serious, electrify how and with what? There are very costly and resource devouring steps to get there without hydro-carbons, only to run out sooner. We absolutely need diversity and life changes, like going to bed when dark, to really make things better.

So they – SLO City Council – have found a roundabout way to get rid of your gas appliances by mandating that you “electrify” with energy-effective appliances, etc. if you remodel your home by adding 250 s.f. or more. They discussed it a couple of months ago and are bringing it back in June for finalization, from my understanding.

I’m holding my breath until I hear the SLO City leaders say they’re going to stop their push to ban gas appliances in our homes. They recently directed Staff to come up with an ordinance requiring residents to retrofit their homes to all electric during remodel or at point of sale. Let’s hope they halt that plan, but I certainly won’t breathe easy about this until there is an acknowledgement by the city that they won’t be moving forward (at least for now) with any of their all-electric appliance push.

It’s the same thing behind electric vehicles – control. If those in power shut down the grid, they have people desperate for help. The perpetrator is the rescuer and can charge exorbitant amounts, control the supply, and have people thinking they are lucky to have power. It has NOTHING to do with saving the environment, and everything to do with power and control. Electrical production is still predominately from coal burning, oh, and a lot of it comes from natural gas burning too. Let’s just ban humans and solve the whole mess…

So you’re not being controlled now by the fossil fuel companies? I guess $5 a gallon isn’t exorbitant. And coal accounts for only about 2% of California’s energy mix, down from 18% 15 years ago.

By the way, 2023 was the hottest year on record and scientists are pleading with us to cut fossil fuels.

When you get China and India onboard you let us know. Until then realize that whatever we do here in the USA is insignificant.

China has a population four times greater than the US yet only produce a bit more than half the amount of emissions. What we do is not “insignificant.”

Oops, I meant China produces slightly more than double what the US does with a far larger population.

China is not dumb and they are moving to reduce emissions, but we should be leading the way.

China is building TWO new coal plants per WEEK. Moving toward reducing emissions? HA!

It’s only $5 per gallon in California and perhaps a few other left leaning states. I’ve been in Indiana, Kentucky, West Va, Ohio and Pennsylvania recently and regular gas is $2.75-$3.00 per gallon. Hmmmm…I guess those greedy oil companies are only greedy in California? Might there be other reasons for this disparity?

By the way, converting to Electric cars and appliances still requires extensive use of fossil fuels to make the electricity, not to mention the environmental devastation surrounding mining for rare earth metals, solar panels, and wind turbine blades.

I don’t see the oil companies telling you you have to buy a gas vehicle and maybe if the government would let them build new refiners that will be more efficient instead of not letting them that would help. Some scientists also said they earth will be gone by now if I recall

Fossil fuel burns forever but you can only burn a solar panel once.

Prove me wrong!

If you don’t see oil companies encouraging people to buy gas vehicles and engage in other activities that increase use of oil, then you haven’t been paying attention. One great example is the Saudi Oil company’s Oil Demand Sustainability Programme (ODSP). It is a program intended to do exactly that.

Agree with you and it’s about time judges do the right thing and follow the law and stop this BS.

If those in power shut down the grid, they have people desperate for help. “

Um, can’t *those in power* just as easily shut down gas pipelines if they wanted to do that? The difference with electricity is its easy to install solar and batteries and generate your own, pretty difficult to manufacture your own natural gas.

What is still so frustrating is what is stated in the last paragraph. SLO city directed the attorney to find out how Berkeley plans to move forward… or, the city can ACCEPT what the court says and drop its pursuit of banning natural gas. Even though courts rule against things like this, and so many other things that restrict liberties and rights of the people, that doesn’t matter. These liberal and delusional city “leaders” will keep trying to find work around an instead of complying. Hey SLO city…there is nothing to wait and see about. It’s clear, don’t try and control everything, and accept defeat. You are on the wrong side of so many things that it’s time to concede.

Insanity from Cal Poly SLO and Berserkely?

Natural gas is clean, electricity is not. Electricity comes from burning natural gas at 35% efficiency vs. 80-97% at your house, coal, half of LA’s electricity, or solar which is going to require massive lithium mining for batteries with limited capacity and lifespan and very high expense.

Try googling “cheapest form of electricity” and see what comes up.

No serious cook wants to cook with electricity. No matter what source is cheapest.

I’ll take utterly reliable 24/7/365 nuclear generated electricity, over cheap and intermittent solar and wind any day…or night….or during a storm…or during a heavy snow..

Remember the brown outs when folks with electric cars were told not to charge them? Now, add cooking to list of things not to do when the grid can’t keep up with demand, and people are really going to lose it.

Seems logic is officially dead. “Natural Gas is clean, but electricity that comes from natural gas is not”. Wow, figure that one out. So somehow using gas to produce electricity makes it dirty!


Finally a common sense ruling!

And it came from the Ninth Circuit Court…… Will wonders never cease?