By Don Ford

BERKELEY (CBS SF) – Berkeley’s mayor signed a new city ordinance banning natural gas in new construction projects starting next year.

For years, consumers were told that the desirable fuel was clean burning natural gas.

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“Gas is the clean energy relative to coal and diesel, but California has committed to the environmental requirement, in that is all gas has to be gone by mid-century,” Dan Kammen – Professor of Energy, U.C. Berkeley.

And the city of Berkeley is leading the charge with the law that covers new construction.

“Every bit of Natural Gas in fracture you put in, the gas water heater, the gas powered range, those have to go,” Kammen said.

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However, if you already have gas appliances, you will be grandfathered in and not required to retrofit.

Many residents have mixed feelings about the push to electricity.

“I’m definitely not going to put in a new gas stove when I replace my stove. Because gas in the house is a really big frontier for reducing our carbon footprint,” Berkeley resident Holly Johnson said.

“I like both. Electricity is cleaner for the environment so, I’d probably choose that over natural gas but, I’d rather have the choice, verses being told,” said Paul Rieger.

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Marin County is offering rebates to residents who convert from gas to electricity. Some rebates are worth hundreds of dollars.