Forgetting to add salt while cooking needn’t be one of your main worries anymore. A new study from Stanford University finds that gas-burning stoves in kitchens leak significant amounts of methane from pipes, hoses, and fittings, mostly before (and after) the gas is burned. Worryingly, over 20 years, these emissions have a heat-trapping climate impact equivalent to the CO2 emissions from about half a million gasoline-powered cars a year. In the study, scientists found the gas stoves leaked regardless of age, cost or brand – even when the stove is off. And the stoves also release nitrogen dioxide, which can trigger asthma attacks, reduced lung function, and worsening coughs.
“If you have the financial ability to swap out a gas stovetop for an electric induction cooktop, I do think it’s a good idea,” said Rob Jackson, the study’s co-author told the New York Times. “It’s a good idea for the planet and for air quality.” (New York Times $, NPR, Washington Post $, EE News $, Bloomberg $)