Posted in: Green News

EPA Wood Stove Ban Designed To Reduce Airborne Fine Particles

wood burning stoves

Wood burning stoves may soon be a thing of the past. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is banning many varieties of the popular rural heating sources. The EPA wants to halt the production and sale of the types of stoves used by approximately 80 percent of the homes that heat at least partially with wood.The regulations limit the amount of “airborne fine-particle matter” to 12 micrograms per cubic meter of air. The current EPA regulations allow for 15 micrograms in the same amount of air space.

Most of the wood stoves currently nestled inside cabins and homes from coast-to-coast don’t meet the new environmental standard. The EPA launched the Burn Wise website to help convince the public that the new regulations were needed. According to a Washington Times review of the wood stove ban, the most dangerous aspect of the EPA proposed guidelines is the one-size-fits-all approach to the perceived problem.

The same wood burning stove rules would apply to both heavily air-pollution laden major cities and far cleaner rural regions with extremely cooler temperatures. Families living in Alaska, or off the grid in wilderness area in the West, will most likely have extreme difficulty remaining in their cold, secluded homes if the EPA wood stove rules are enacted as written.

A statement about the wood stove ban on the EPA website reads:

Replacing an older stove with a cleaner-burning stove will not improve air quality if the older stove is reused somewhere else. For this reason, wood stove change out programs usually require older stoves to be destroyed and recycled as scrap metal, or rendered inoperable.

Burn Wise is a partnership program associated with the EPA that is tasked with emphasizing the “importance of burning the right wood, the right way, in the right stove.” Information shared on the website operated by the federal government also states that both state and local agencies are pursuing ways to improve air quality that relate to wood-burning stoves. In some areas of the country, local governments have gone further than the EPA and banned not just the sale of such stoves, but the usage of old stoves – and even the usage of fireplaces. That means that even if you still have a stove or a fireplace, you can’t burn it for fear of a fine. Puget Sound, Washington, is one such location. The EPA also has compiled a list of “approved” stoves.

The stated goal of the EPA Burn Wise program is to educate both local governmental agencies and citizens about the need for more “cleaner-burning” in the marketplace. Three of the most recent highlighted articles and webinars on the EPA Burn Wise website include details about a voluntary wood burning fireplace program, strategies for reducing residential wood some in state, tribal, and local communities, and a recording entitled, “Reducing Residential Wood Some: Is it Worth it?”

The Washington Times also reported that wood burning stoves put less airborne fine-particle manner in the air than is present from secondhand some in a closed vehicle. When an individual smokes inside a car with the windows up, passengers are reportedly exposed to approximately 4,000 micrograms of soot per cubic meter.

Alaska State Representative Tammie Wilson had this to say about the EPA wood stove ban during an interview with the Associated Press:

Everybody wants clean air. We just have to make sure that we can also heat our homes. Rather than fret over EPA’s computer-model-based warning about the dangers of inhaling soot from wood smoke, residents have more pressing concerns on their minds such as the immediate risk of freezing when the mercury plunges.

What do you think about the EPA wood stove ban?

[Image Via: Shutterstock.com]

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9 Responses to “EPA Wood Stove Ban Designed To Reduce Airborne Fine Particles”

  1. Jeremy Allan D'Herville

    What do I think? Given that I witness devices aimed at fixing 'ventilation' issues and their effectiveness for improved combustion and clear emissions in a matter of minutes from start up everyday, while EPA only recognises emissions tested from appliances in calibrated – optimised lab conditions that need those optomised – calibrated conditions in the field to work properly, I'd say they are making a big mistake. They are not using good science. They are working for commercial benefits, not health benefits. I think their endangerment finding is as flawed and fabricated as the folk who helped sign it in to the 1990 Clean Air Amendments – those individuals such as John Beale and his mate Robert Brenner! It is independently toxicologically tested pollutants that should be regulated, not miasmic epedemiological – comparative – estimated cost benefit – junk science 'mixes'. Pollution ofsetting and trading has corrupted the cause significantly where big energy players undermine consumers' true sustainable and self sufficient heating choices with their complex (supposedly expert) inconclusive links, estimates and suggestions and the application of these 'maybes' into project cost benefits – not based on material evidence. Smoke and mirrors from just another US PR agency. Good wood should have an industry and the natural gas and electricity 'healthscare' lobbyists should be walloped back into their place of responsibility, i.e. paying their dues for the pollution they create and stop this abusive propaganda network from getting any worse for the consumers. The literature from the EPA and their green branded natural gas and electric healthscare lobbyists never changes – as if it is straight from their own indoctrinated 1990s Clean Air Act environmental curriculum, yet the technology is changing and improving in the industry without their part. They're frauds. They are not helping anyone but themselves.

  2. Citizens For a Wood Smokefree City of Shoreline, Washington

    From Citizens For a Wood Smokefree City of Shoreline, Washington
    The "Citizens for a Wood Smokefree"is a Facebook I, Deb Marchant created as a private citizen. I have not, nor does anyone in my family or among my friends have any affiliation with businesses or groups in competition with the wood burning industry. This Facebook is just my way of helping out.

    Before going to the "Citizens For a Wood Smokefree City of Shoreline, Washington" Facebook, be aware that it can be intense, and especially if you're just learning about wood smoke. Before going to this Facebook, and to help you sit there long enough to absorb this, for many, new information, I recommend having had enough sleep, some exercise, and a good meal before going there. And while reading take plenty of deep breaths.

    Best of Health Everyone, Deb

  3. David Brockett

    Well they can TRY to come and take my woodburner but it won't be pretty!

  4. Shawn Brady

    Why are they trying to regulate everything? This will do more hard then good. What's wrong with burning wood to keep the house warm. they have been doing it for a hundred years, don't fix it if it isn't broke

  5. James Reeves

    same here its my constitutional right to burn wood as its the only source of heat i can afford!!! so you want me to use electricity (cause gov makes money here) from our not so clean local coal powered power plant go figure that one! im not going to use my central heat because the gov. says so. the gov.is responsible for the long term power outages in my area during winter months my family would freeze to death if not for my federal airtight model288. looks like the freedoms in this country are depleted more each day. if u want my stove come get it! bring friends cause it 700 pounds and ima fight you like your zombies!! someone build a petition against goverment mandates that discredit our constitutional rights!

  6. Rodger Holland

    The EPA regulation on wood burning is nothing new. The first NSPS (New source performance standard was put in place in 1988 and revised in 1992. The EPA was mandated to review it every 4 years, but it went dormant for many years due to lack of funding. The NSPS is designed to regulate stoves that have not been built yet and does not address the stoves currently in homes. The simplest way for consumers to clean up their air is to follow the information the EPA gives you in the Burn Wise information. Consumers can also replace that old stove with a stove that meets the 1992 standard of less than 7.5 grams of emissions (Non EPA stoves emit approx 80 – 100 grams of emissions). There currently are several areas of the country that have Change out programs in place to help you trade in that old stove and get it out of use. A change out program will do more good now than the regulation of stoves that aren't even built yet.