The Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District kicks off its annual woodstove exchange program on Wednesday, Jan. 31.
The ACRD will have $14,750 at its disposal—part of a province-wide program that will see $195,500 paid to 15 B.C. communities in an attempt to lower emissions into their respective airsheds.
This year the program is two-tiered, says Anna Lewis, coordinator of the Alberni Valley’s Air Quality Council. People may choose either a $250 incentive and $150 retailer discount for changing to a cleaner burning woodstove, or a $400 incentive for changing to a qualifying electric heat pump, gas or propane stove, or pellet-fueled stove.
In B.C., all new woodstoves and inserts sold must meet U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) or Canadian Standards Association (CSA) emission standards.
The woodstove exchange program began in the ACRD in 2009 and to date 334 woodstoves have been exchanged under this program, Lewis said. “It’s a drop in the bucket, but it’s moving. If you look at the numbers of the output of the stoves versus high-emission ones, the output is more like wood pellet stoves,” she said. “The technology is amazing.”
Retailers in Port Alberni, Bamfield, Ucluelet and Parksville are participating in the woodstove exchange this year. The offer applies to residents within the ACRD and is valid from Jan. 31 to June 30. Rebates will be issued on a first come, first served basis, Lewis said. If there is any money left in the coffers after June 30, the ACRD will offer the program again in the fall.
“I have a feeling that it will be used up,” she said. “There are a lot of belching old woodstoves in the Valley.”
For more information and to learn how to qualify, go to the ACRD’s website at www.acrd.bc.ca or call 250-720-2700.