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House approves bill to phase out wood stoves

Published March 6, 2014 10:53 pm
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

The House approved legislation Thursday that would offer a subsidy to roughly 200 homeowners that rely on wood-burning stoves in parts of the state with dirty air to transition to cleaner natural gas.

Phasing out the wood stoves would dramatically reduce fine-particulate pollution, said the sponsor, Rep. Patrice Arent, D-Millcreek. Heating a home with a wood stove, she said, produces as much pollution as 200 natural-gas furnaces.

Rep. Edward Redd, R-Logan, said the wood stoves make up as much as 7 percent of the pollution during winter inversions.

HB154 allocates $1.5 million to help people who live in areas where the air does not meet federal standards transition from wood to natural gas make the change. It also includes a public-education campaign to inform Utahns about the effects of burning wood.

The bill passed the House 43-28 and goes to the Senate for consideration.

A House committee earlier had stripped out a provision to hire extra state enforcement employees to cite people burning wood on bad-air days, with critics referring to them as chimney "gestapo."

— Robert Gehrke




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