Maryland legislators, after adopting sweeping climate legislation, voted today to adopt new appliance efficiency standards, a key step that will reduce climate-changing emissions and consumer utility bills.
The Maryland Senate unanimously voted (47-0) to adopt the Energy and Water Efficiency Standards bill, setting new and updated efficiency standards for 13 common household and commercial appliances, including air purifiers, faucets, water coolers, and restaurant cooking equipment. Governor Larry Hogan’s Maryland Energy Administration supported the bill, which was sponsored by Delegate Sheila Ruth (HB772), and the companion bill sponsored by Senator Paul Pinsky (SB494). The governor is expected to sign the final legislation.
Utility bill savings for Marylanders resulting from the new standards will grow to more than $200 million annually by 2030. Carbon dioxide emissions savings will grow to about 125,000 metric tons annually by 2030, equivalent to taking 27,000 cars off the road for a year.
Maryland is the 12th state in five years to adopt appliance standards, joining mid-Atlantic neighbors New Jersey and the District of Columbia.
The passage of the appliance standards bill comes shortly after the Maryland General Assembly adopted a comprehensive climate bill that includes a goal to reduce emissions 60% by 2031 (relative to 2006 levels). Should both bills become law, the appliance standards measures will be ready to contribute toward meeting the state’s new climate goals.