Court strikes down Biden's appliance regulations

 January 15, 2024

A federal court has just struck down some of President Joe Biden's appliance regulations. 

Fox News reports:

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit issued a ruling late Monday overturning the [Department of Energy's (DOE)] decision in 2022 to repeal a Trump-era regulation governing water use in dishwashers and clothes washers.

The court ruled that the DOE likely does not have the authority to issue such regulations.

But, the court also found that, even if the department did have such authority, in this particular instance, it used this authority in an "arbitrary and capricious" manner, which is against the law.


The Biden administration has issued a number of regulations targeting household appliances. It has done so in the name of climate change.

The particular regulations at issue in this case targeted dishwashers and washing machines, and what the regulations attempted to do was limit the amount of water that these machines are allowed to use each cycle.

Whether or not these regulations would do anything beneficial for the environment is highly debatable.

As the Washington Examiner explains:

At issue were regulations by Biden appointees at the Department of Energy that imposed significant restrictions on washing machines and dishwashers. Both regulations limited the use of water per cycle while forcing the machines to run for much longer time periods to make up the difference.

Many experts have persuasively argued that the regulations actually end up using more resources than they save.

Struck down

Last week, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit essentially struck down the Biden administration's dishwasher and washing machine regulations.

"Even if DOE could consider dishwashers’ and clothes washers’ ‘efficiency’ in both ‘energy use’ and ‘water use,’ the 2020 Rules likely promoted greater efficiency in both categories than the Repeal Rule. Assuming both energy conservation metrics are on the table, the States argue, and DOE does not appear to dispute, that one important aspect of that problem is whether appliance regulations actually reduce energy and water consumption," the court wrote.

The referred-to Trump administration rules, according to Fox, "allowed for the sale of faster dishwashers and clothes washers that use slightly more water and energy.

The court continued, "Yet the administrative record contains ample evidence that DOE’s efficiency standards likely do the opposite: They make Americans use more energy and more water for the simple reason that purportedly ‘energy efficient’ appliances do not work."

It is yet another legal defeat for Biden.

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