A Baltimore nonprofit has launched a small pilot program to provide a handful of residents with electric induction stoves in place of gas ones with the goal of expanding the program in the coming months.
The program is part of national trend to move away from gas appliances.
The Civic Works program is small – involving only 10 residents. The nonprofit will provide the stoves and related cookware and cover the installation costs.
The program is based on a provision in the federal Inflation Reduction Act, which will provide rebates for people who switch their gas appliances to electric-powered ones. Once state and federal officials work out how the rebates will work (likely by year’s end), Civic Works believes it can offer a similar program on a larger scale.
Supporters of the rebates say converting from gas to electric-powered appliances will have health and environmental benefits.
“There’s a lot of recently published research that shows a causal relationship between gas stoves and respiratory illnesses, especially asthma,” said Evie Schwartz, director of energy programs at Civic Works. “They release carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide and several other poisonous gases that are related to respiratory illnesses.”
She said gas appliances also give off carbon dioxide emissions and methane, which contribute to climate change.
Recently, Montgomery County voted to ban gas appliances in newly constructed homes, taking effect in 2026. New York and California are considering similar legislation.
Federal regulators have even floated a nationwide ban on new gas appliances, which drew harsh criticism from conservative lawmakers.
However, Schwartz said Civic Works isn’t advocating for a ban in Baltimore.
“Our approach at Civic Works is not to force people to change but to explain the benefits and to incentivize that change and to make it easier to make those changes,” she said.
Schwartz said a possible expanded program would help residents obtain the federal rebates and connect them with other subsidies.
Schwartz stressed that electric induction stoves are much different than the traditional electric stove, which have a bad reputation for poor temperature control. In the restaurant world, gas stoves are considered the gold standard.
“[Induction stoves] heat the pot, not the burner, through magnets. So it’s much much more efficient. It’s much much easier to cook with and they are easy to clean,” she said. “I’ve talked to many people who own them. … The first thing they say is ‘I don’t miss my gas stove.’”