Sat. Sep 23rd, 2023
    DOE Adviser Promoted to Senior Role Despite Senate Confirmation Failure

    The Department of Energy (DOE) has promoted Jeff Marootian, a top adviser to Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm, to a senior role overseeing home appliance regulations. Marootian’s appointment as the principal deputy assistant secretary of the DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) comes after his nomination to lead the EERE as assistant secretary was withdrawn following opposition from Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chairman Joe Manchin. Despite not being confirmed by the Senate, Marootian now effectively serves as the chief of the EERE office.

    The EERE office is responsible for issuing and implementing energy efficiency regulations, including those pertaining to gas stoves and other home appliances. However, Marootian’s appointment has drawn criticism from Republicans, who argue that he is an unaccountable bureaucrat carrying out President Biden’s orders to attack affordable household appliances. They claim that these regulations are making life more expensive for Americans and limiting consumer choice. Republicans are urging the administration to nominate someone who will work to lower costs and provide more options for consumers.

    Marootian’s nomination was first made in July 2022, but it faced opposition from Republicans who believed he was better suited for a role in the Transportation Department. After his nomination stalled, Marootian was hired by Granholm as her senior adviser on energy efficiency and renewable energy. He underwent a confirmation hearing in November and was ultimately reported out of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee in December. However, Manchin’s opposition in May led to the withdrawal of Marootian’s nomination.

    Since Marootian’s appointment and the withdrawal of his nomination, the DOE has been pursuing various energy efficiency regulations for household appliances. These regulations have been criticized by consumer advocates as regulatory overreach and restrictive to consumer choice. These rules impact appliances such as gas stovetops, ovens, washers, refrigerators, air conditioners, and dishwashers. Critics argue that the increasing number of regulations on home appliances is detrimental to consumers and limits their options.


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