Exchanging an old wood stove for a cleaner-burning model is good, but exchanging it for electric, gas, propane, or pellet-heating is even better under the wood stove exchange program.
This winter, the program will provide a total of $195,500 to 15 British Columbia communities.
In the past, the program provided the same incentive to anyone switching, regardless of fuel source. This year, the provincial government has changed the incentive structure to:
- a $250 incentive for changing to a cleaner-burning wood stove; and
- a $400 incentive for changing to a qualifying electric heat pump, gas or propane stove, or pellet-fuelled stove.
“It is clear that First Nations and local governments around the province are committed to reducing particulate emissions in their communities,” said Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy George Heyman. “The higher incentive level recognizes the greater air-quality benefit of the non-wood-burning options, and is our government’s first step in improving this worthwhile program. I look forward to continuing to work with First Nations and local governments to improve air quality right across B.C.”
Thirteen of the local communities that have been approved for funding are continuing their programs from previous years, and two new communities have joined this year.
The British Columbia Lung Association administers the wood stove exchange program on behalf of the Province and provides educational materials and support to participating communities.
“In the 11 years of this program, we’ve raised awareness of the effects of burning wood and have removed tonnes of particulates from the air,” said Scott McDonald, CEO of the B.C. Lung Association. “Many people are now aware wood smoke contains many small particulates that can cause harm. We hope the exchange program is extended in the years to come.”
Since 2008, communities have received almost $2.9 million in provincial funding and more than 7,000 wood-burning stoves and inserts have been replaced by newer, cleaner burning models or other cleaner heat sources, resulting in significant reductions of particulate matter emissions entering the air each year.
Provincial Wood Stove Exchange Program: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/environment/air-land-water/air/air-pollution/smoke-burning/exchange
A backgrounder follows.