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Improving Air Quality in Your Community

Indoor Air: Residential Wood Burning

You can help residential wood burning consumers reduce emissions of hazardous air pollutants (HAPs), particle pollution, and volatile organic compounds (VOC) that may affect consumers, their families, the neighborhood, and the community by conducting these activities:


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Make Connections

      How?
  • Get to know local wood-burning equipment retailers. They know best about the types of equipment available for residential wood burning and the regulations with which the equipment must comply.
  • Get to know members of your community who burn wood. They can share their concerns about residential wood burning as well as ideas about how to reduce air pollution from wood burning.
  • Keep local media aware of progress by sending them updates. Publicity can reward success and attract more public involvement.
  • Communicate the potential health, safety, and financial benefits of burning cleaner.
      Benefits
  • Increases cooperation among wood burning equipment retailers and community leaders.
  • Increases trust among individual wood burners and community leaders.
      Costs
  • Time needed to meet with wood burning equipment retailers and wood-burning members of the community.
      More Information

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Assist in Conducting a Wood Stove Changeout Campaign

      How?
  • Due to the size of a geographic area that may be a candidate for a Wood Stove Changeout Campaign and the scope of work that encompasses such a campaign, it would be best for you to work with state and local agencies to help them design and implement the campaign.
  • Offer input about specific needs within your community.
      Benefits
  • Reduces exposure of residents to wood smoke pollution.
  • Increases the number of EPA-certified wood burning appliances used by residents.
  • Through a collaborative effort, U.S. EPA Region 5 and the Hearth, Patio, and Barbecue Association implemented the Great Stove and Fireplace Changeout Program. Working closely with the Great Lakes states resulted in the removal and destruction of 1,200 old wood stoves. Of these, 20% of the residents switched from wood heat to gas while the other 60% switched to more efficient and less polluting EPA-certified wood stoves or pellet stoves. (EPA)
      Costs
  • Costs associated with assisting in the implementation of a Wood Stove Changeout Campaign, including financial incentives, advertising, and promotion.
  • Free materials may be available from EPA.
      More Information

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Encourage Good Burning Practices

      How?
  • Hold public workshops to inform people on how to burn wood more efficiently. See Canada's Burn it Smart! program for an effective model.
  • Use public workshops to educate residents about new wood stove and fireplace designs that are more efficient and less polluting than old models.
  • Demonstrate how EPA-certified wood-burning appliances can burn more efficiently than conventional wood stoves.
  • Develop a media campaign that touts the benefits of good burning practices.
      Benefits
  • Reduces exposure of residents to wood smoke pollution.
  • Increases awareness about the impacts of wood smoke pollution.
  • An EPA-certified stove emits 70% less pollution, on average, than a non-certified stove. They can use one-third less wood and deposit less creosote, as well. (EPA).
      Costs
  • Costs associated with the preparation of materials for information sessions.
  • Costs of advertising and promotion.
      More Information

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Reward Communities

      How?
  • Use media connections to encourage involvement and provide coverage for successful efforts.
  • Visibly display awards or certificates within the community to increase interest.
      Benefits
  • Increases awareness about the impacts of wood smoke pollution.
  • Reduces exposure of residents to wood smoke pollution.
      Costs
  • Costs associated with producing the awards.
      More Information

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