The political left is up in arms after the federal government announced a plan to cut a decade-old water conservation regulation, mocking President Donald Trump for caring more about his showers than the planet.
What many fail to mention is that the original enforcement guidance, a policy of former President Barack Obama’s administration, was so bad that it caused industry outrage and was even mistaken for a scam.
Trump’s Department of Energy issued the rule change Thursday.
The government’s reversal of the previous interpretation is set to give companies more market power as they try new models, and consumers more freedom of choice.
Best of all, it takes one last relic of the Obama administration out of American bathrooms.
The original 1992 Energy Policy Act set the maximum flow of “any showerhead” to be 2.5 gallons per minute or less.
This was largely interpreted to mean the restriction applied to individual nozzles in a system, so that showerheads with separate hoses, columns with body-spraying jets, and other configurations could emit 2.5 gallons per nozzle.
An Obama-era guidance change drastically reversed this interpretation.
After a year of review following a publicly released draft, the former administration issued the guidance change in 2011. Under the updated view, all nozzles in a system cannot exceed 2.5 gpm total when used together.
For showerheads with only two nozzles, this meant up to a 50 percent reduction of power. On more complicated systems, the restriction made the devices functionally impractical.
The update was such a drastic change that one person thought a letter from the government about the restriction was part of some criminal scheme.
“At first, I thought it was a scam,” Pedro Mier, vice president of the bathroom and kitchen fixture company Altmans Products, told The Foundation for Economic Education in 2017.
Mier’s company was forced to stop selling several high-flow models despite the showerheads’ popularity among customers.
Of course, Trump’s move to give more freedom to the American consumer is being panned by the left as narcissistic and embarrassing. Mockery of the president’s hair is widespread in criticisms of the decision.
I cannot believe I have to say this: the federal government should not be changing our country’s water efficiency standards because Donald Trump is having problems washing his hair. https://t.co/twHtj6zK8S
— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) August 13, 2020
We’re also now just wildly embarrassing:
“The Energy Department today proposed easing efficiency requirements for shower heads following multiple complaints from President Trump about how low water flow is impeding his ability to properly wash his hair.”https://t.co/oQzflFDbJ7
— Rachel Maddow MSNBC (@maddow) August 12, 2020
The deregulation of American bathing habits is only the latest in Trump’s war against government red tape. Giving companies and customers more freedom than ever is a surefire way to bring our economy roaring back stronger than ever.
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