[LA Times] The end of Korean BBQ in L.A.? What the gas stove ban means for your fave restaurants
Thanks @ipsedixit . This sounds like such a terrible idea that wasn’t thought out by our city government officials. Of course they didn’t think about the ramifications, only a basic idea in a vacuum.
What would happen to all the restaurants relying on gas right now? Especially the ones that can’t afford to swap out their equipment with electric stoves, let alone mom & pop shops learning how to cook with them (viz., no more Woks; no more KBBQ grills, etc.)?
The good thing is that this is prospective and not retroactive.
Thanks @ipsedixit . Although I wonder, do you think this would turn existing restaurants with gas lines into “increased value assets”, sort of like vying for a restaurant / bar with a Liquor License? So in the future would investors bid on a space that had gas lines and treat it like a rare treasure?
I haven’t read enough about the reg in question (except to note as already mentioned that it’s prospective only), but I’d be surprised if it doesn’t (now, or perhaps to be inserted into a future version) include the notion that changing hands destroys the grandfathered status of the property.
On the reg itself, while I get that “every little bit helps!” is a valid rationale, this is a very little bit of help. An article I read about this recently indicated that restaurants accounted for something like 1.6% of US natural gas usage, and home kitchens another 0.4% of it.
So they’re using a sledgehammer to swat at a fly that’s only 2% of the problem… (Assumes LA proper isn’t a monster anomaly where home/resto cooking account for 50% of LA’s natural gas use, of course.)
 (Bloomberg news, I think, but my computer decided to restart and lost me my open panes)
Edit - here it is. Oh, duh, it was posted by @ipsedixit in another thread!
Thanks @CCE , I also heard from someone who mentioned a similar statistic you were talking about. Yah, that restaurants’ usage of natural gas was a tiny percentage of the actual overall usage, and they were targeting the wrong area but impacting countless small businesses in the process. I hope it gets overturned.
Perhaps in the near future, but long term I think locations will not be prized because they are grandfather-ed for the use of gas stoves. Why? This ordinance, if it stands, essentially makes the market for gas stoves – from manufacture to aftermarket service – obsolete. So if you have a restaurant that is allowed to have a gas burner and it breaks or needs service eventually you won’t have anyone to service or replace it. So as an owner of such an appliance you’ll be forced to swap out to electric or induction, making any grandfather-ed store locations not anymore unique than any other location.
This ordinance is classic structural racism.
It’s a law passed with the ostensible goal of environmental preservation but it’s real intended target is targeting a minority population (i.e. Asians like Koreans and Chinese) so as to make them conform more to the majority way of doing things. Because, as you rightly note, the use of gas stoves and burners contributes to such a minute percentage of overall pollution that even wiping out all gas stove tops would not have any type of meaningful or appreciable impact on the environment.
If environmental goals was really the intended purpose, why not ban beef since cows and cattle contribute far more to environmental pollution than gas stoves do. Or maybe almonds, since CA is in a severe drought and almonds are thirstier than fish.
But I digress.
Sorry for the rant.
The transformation of energy use from coal to gas, and gas to electric has been going on through our lifetimes. The last holdout has been the gas stovetop in the home and many commercial kitchens.
The good news for them is induction, a step beyond electric that can be competitive with their solution for many purposes–even better for some. The bad news is the tradeoffs jepardize some solutions.
As a home cook who has adopted induction for my stovetop, and convection for my ovens, I’ve not entirely given up gas. I’ve had a portable gas unit for camping my whole life.
Similarly, gas stovetops can be implemented side by side with their units for some applications–and are already in place. The new regulations will almost certainly phase in electric requirements with waivers available for commercial and home use.
I just hope that there is no over-reaction.
Did you not read my post on the other thread?
Induction cannot simulate gas cooking. It just cannot as I note in my other post below. Please stop belaboring this point.
Of course, ipsedixit,
but there is plenty of time for adaptation–and it’s already happening.
Both at home, and commercially, gas stovetops are already supplemented for some purposes.
Vollrath, marketing solely to commercial users has been very successful in carving out a niche:
There are many others.
You greatly underestimate the ingenuity of Advancded rdestauranteurs and and home cooks:
Most changes in technology rarely are able to completely replicate previous ways of doing certain things and need ((sometimes painful) adaption. At the same time the current (and obvious near to mid term) “health” of our planet is really, really bad and we need immediate changes to have at least a chance to not even revert but only soften the impact. And I agree with you that this gas stove initiative shouldn’t be by far the only thing we are doing in parallel - as you mentioned it is as important to change the impact of animal farming (especially beef) and should start to regulate it so that we drastically minimize its impact on the carbon footprint. Same with cars, farming etc.
That article is click bait.
It wasn’t a comparison, more an op-ed piece of what that particular author preferred.
Agreed, but it was companion to the OP so I thought it should be included.
The problem is that banning gas stoves has almost an insignificant impact (maybe even no effect) on the environment and an outsized impact (by comparison) on cultural identity.
We would be better off banning high fiber foods so as to minimize the collective human flatulence problem.
I find it somewhat humorous that you made this reply in response to a poster named Honkman:
My son and I had a longish discussion the other day about the human need to feel like “we need to do something” about a given problem. I think that many times we “do something” because doing nothing feels like we are failing.
I’ve often said every committee (corporate, governmental, whatever) needs one person who was hired specifically to ask, “Yes, but do we have evidence that what we are proposing to do is effective in ameliorating the problem we’re addressing?” - and if not, she or he gets to veto it.
If you go electric, we’ll soon pass gas.
The regulators all over the world–but especially here in California–are planning to phase out the use of gas as much as possible as soon as possible. As you’ve pointed out, specific applications like restaurant and home cooking hookups don’t make attractive targets–and they always will have non hookup gas options.
Even if somehow restaurant and home kitchen hookups were targeted, there are other bottled and container sources available. Far more challenging to me, would be to lose my gas heat, but I already have been using an electric space heater for years, and even my hot water heater could be switched to electric with hookups that I have.
In places like SOCAL, there will always be provisions for gas backup of some kind because of earthquake protocols and plans.
The LA Times article is just a great way to promote interest–and attract new subscribers.
Your home gas stovetop is safe for the foreseeable future–Korean and Chinese flames will continue to flash, and that smokey taste will remain available to your taste buds.
To quote one John Wooden.
Never mistake activity for achievement
That fits to a tee here.
Just to complete the circle here regarding the LA Times article.
While not a contemporary companion piece, so it’s not exactly a rebuttal, but this article from the Washington Examiner about 2 years ago provides some nice counterpoints.
*And, yes, the Washington Examiner is a noted conservative leaning publication, just as the LA Times is a noted liberal leaning publication.