Largest Wood Stove Changeout Program in United States Launched

Lung Association will distribute $1.8 million in vouchers to remove high polluting wood stoves from the region and clean the air

(May 7, 2014)

The American Lung Association of the Northeast announced the launch of the largest Wood Stove Changeout Program in the United States. The program will cover all counties in Rhode Island; New London and Windham counties in Connecticut; and Bristol, Norfolk and Plymouth counties in Massachusetts. 

The purpose of the Changeout Program is to improve outdoor and indoor air quality by removing old, high polluting low efficiency wood stoves and hydronic heaters and replacing them with cleaner burning, more efficient EPA-certified wood, pellet or gas stoves.  The American Lung Association of the Northeast has long been committed to reducing residents’ exposure to wood smoke and was awarded a 2013 EPA Environmental Merit Award for their successful implementation of Wood Stove Changeout Programs in New Hampshire and Massachusetts. This new program will build upon this success.

“Replacing older high polluting stoves with new ones is one of the quickest ways for communities to reduce particle pollution,” says Jeff Seyler, CEO and President of the American Lung Association of the Northeast. 

This program will be reducing air pollution in an area where more than 3 million people live.  The program will help improve the lung health of residents in participating communities while supporting local retail stove businesses who have chosen to partner with the Lung Association in this effort.

"EPA is pleased that the American Lung Association is instituting this voluntary program to help citizens in Rhode Island and parts of Massachusetts and Connecticut to replace older wood-burning stoves and appliances with new, cleaner and more efficient units. This program, which will help reduce air pollution in communities across southern New England, was made possible by EPA’s Clean Air enforcement settlement with Dominion Energy,” said Curt Spalding, regional administrator of the U.S Environmental Protection Agency's New England Office.
 

Homeowners as well as members of tribes who live in the project area can apply for a voucher to trade in their non-EPA certified woodstove. (Most stoves made before 1989 are non-EPA certified)   Vouchers will be granted for:

·    $1000 to replace it with an EPA certified wood stove;
·    $2000 to replace it with a  pellet or gas stove;
·    $3000 toward a wood, pellet or gas stove for those who are income qualified – defined as documented current participation in the Women Infant and Children’s Nutrition Program, Medicaid program or the Low Income Heating Assistance Program; 
·    $4000 to replace a hydronic heater (outdoor wood boiler) with an EPA- certified Phase II hydronic heater or gas furnace.; or
·    $300 for a new catalyst or retrofit for the existing wood stove or hydronic heater.


Once people receive their voucher, they will have 30 days to enter into a purchase agreement with one of our participating retailers. The retailer then installs the new stove and recycles and makes the old stove inoperable.  “The number of vouchers is limited, said Seyler. “ It is first come, first served.” 

For more program details, go to lungne.org/woodstove or call 1-800-548-8252.

The Wood Stove Changeout Program was launched at an event in Warwick, Rhode Island today held at the Stovepipe Fireplace Shop, one of the participating retailers.  Kicking off the event were American Lung Association of the Northeast President & CEO Jeff Seyler; Environmental Protection Agency Region 1 Administrator, Curt Spalding; and the Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Association’s Director of Government Affairs, Ryan Carroll.

"HPBA is delighted to be a part of this massive changeout kick-off event,” said Ryan Carroll, Director of Government Affairs for the Hearth, Patio and Barbecue Association. "Since HPBA initiated the first wood stove changeout in 1990, this innovative program has helped communities reduce emissions by providing consumers with incentives to remove old, dirty-burning wood stoves or wood heating appliances, and replace them with clean, efficient new heating appliances."