Research shows no connection between asthma and gas stoves

This content is sponsored by American Gas Association.

study funded by the World Health Organization (WHO) and published in the Lancet medical journal in February found no association between heating and cooking with natural gas stoves and asthma in children or adults.

To assess its viability as a healthy replacement for less clean fuels in countries around the world, researchers at the University of Liverpool, Peking University, and WHO conducted an extensive meta-analysis examining the risks of natural gas compared to other fuels and electricity. They found no significant association between natural gas and asthma, cough, wheeze or breathlessness. The review also found a lower risk of bronchitis when compared to electricity.

The study’s independent results are in stark contrast to climate-industry-associated studies which have primarily used statistical analysis to show possible cases of asthma without establishing a causal relationship between the disease and gas stoves. “We confirmed that that risk of asthma from gas use was potentially exaggerated in studies with no or limited adjustment for confounders versus those with adjustment for at least one key confounder,” the study reads.

Natural gas was associated with a lower risk of several health conditions when compared to other household fuels such as kerosene and solid fuels, and when compared to electricity, showed no significant association between natural gas use and asthma in children or adults. While the study took note of a possible increased risk of pneumonia and obstructive pulmonary disease with natural gas home use, it noted that “higher-quality studies” did not find significant associations between natural gas use and these diseases.

“This article demonstrates a significantly lower risk for key health outcomes when switching from polluting solid fuels or kerosene to gaseous fuels for cooking or heating, suggesting cleaner fuels could contribute to reducing the global disease burden from exposure to household air pollution,” the study says.

When responding to the Lancet’s World Health Organization-funded research, Karen Harbert, President and CEO of the American Gas Association, pinpoints natural gas as being one of the fundamental drivers for reaching environmental progress globally.

“From providing affordable energy to consumers to driving down emissions, the benefits this fuel has for our nation and our world are tangible,” Harbert said. “This industry continues to innovate and advance technologies to help ensure Americans have access to the safe, efficient, and reliable energy they need and expect.”

The Lancet study’s findings are consistent with current federal guidance on natural gas use in the home and over 100 years of use. The federal government does not recognize any documented risks to respiratory health from natural gas stoves from the regulatory and advisory agencies and organizations responsible for protecting residential consumer health and safety.

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