Home heating oil, hot tubs, swimming pools, some lamps and the office water cooler all will soon have to become more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly. New York Gov. David Paterson signed such requirements into law this week, along with 47 other bills. He vetoed seven bills (for a complete list, go to www.ny.gov/governor). One of the new laws slashes the amount of sulfur allowed in fuel oil used in residences and businesses. New York state is the largest consumer of heating oil in the nation, according to the billâ¿¿s sponsors. The law applies to No. 2 heating oil, which can be used in homes or at commercial and industrial sites. The law kicks in on July 1, 2012, for the start of the 2012-13 heating season. By that time, any No. 2 heating oil companies sell must contain no more than 15 parts per million of sulfur. The current average sulfur content is 2,000 parts per million; under previous state law, it could be as high as 10,000 parts per million. The billâ¿¿s sponsors argued that home heating oil can be put through the same refining process that a lot of diesel fuel is put through, making it â¿¿inexpensiveâ¿ to cut down on heating oilâ¿¿s sulfur content. Sponsors also said sulfur build-up reduces efficiency of heating systems. â¿¿This brings heating oil into the 21st century,â¿ said Ken Ray, president of John Ray & Sons Inc., a heating oil and fuel distributor based in Troy. Heating oil is the same as whatâ¿¿s called â¿¿off-roadâ¿ diesel fuel, used to power objects such as excavators and generators. But sulfur regulations were enforced on off-road diesel a few years agoâ¿¿forcing Ray to buy more trucks to handle what had become separate products that could not be mixed together.