Wednesday, March 13, 2013

An Open Letter to the Utah Legislature in Support of Outdoor Wood Boiler Regulations


The Utah legislature is moving quickly to overturn very reasonable and fair regulations on outdoor wood boilers. Please consider adding your signature to the open letter below, urging Utah to keep the regulations approved by their Air Quality Board.

Utah's regulations allow the installation of EPA Phase 2 outdoor wood boilers in most of the state, but ban them from the very populated areas around Salt Lake which are in air quality non-attainment.

An outdoor boiler manufacturer is aggressively fighting to get the legislature to overturn those regulation based on many misleading statements. Click here for the flyer being circulated to Utah Senators, which argues that outdoor boilers are far more efficient and cleaner than stoves.

The legislation, HB 394, was passed by the Utah house yesterday by a vote of 79 to 12. It moved to the Senate today and will be voted on Wednesday or Thursday without being referring to any committee for a hearing. This legislation will "amend the powers of the Air Quality Board" and prohibit them from "regulating the sale, installation, replacement or operation of an outdoor wood boiler any differently from any other solid fuel burning devices."

If the Senate passes this measure, unregulated and unqualified outdoor wood boilers will be allowed to be installed in Utah.

If you can add your name to the letter below, please email your name (and affiliation if you want your affiliation to appear on the letter) to melissa@forgreenheat.org by no later than 4:00 pm on Wednesday, March 13.

For more information about this, click here.

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Dear esteemed members of the Utah Senate,

We, the undersigned, are writing to urge you not to vote for HB 394 which would overturn Utah's outdoor wood boiler regulations.

The Utah rule finalized by the Air Quality Board is very reasonable, fair and consistent with efforts and regulations in many other states. Revoking the rule is unwarranted and unwise and will open up a market for boiler companies to sell extremely polluting and unregulated appliances.

The efforts to overturn this regulation are based on misleading and inaccurate claims, as set forth in the flyer "Some Facts About HB 294." For example, the flyer claims:

"Outdoor wood boilers are completely legal in 49 other states and only banned in Utah's non-attainment areas."

"Outdoor wood boilers are many times more efficient than EPA certified indoor wood burners."

States all over the country are enacting regulations similar to the ones Utah developed. These regulations are reasonable and necessary to prevent the spread of the most polluting wood burning device in America -- outdoor wood boilers that are not EPA qualified.

At the very least, this bill deserves a full hearing and should not be voted on quickly at the very end of the legislative session. We urge you to protect the reputation of the Utah Senate and not vote for this flawed bill that is based on so many misrepresentations.

Sincerely,

[Your name]

2 comments:

  1. Thank you to everyone who has signed-on so far!

    ReplyDelete
  2. A smoked out family in MinnesotaMarch 19, 2013 at 6:35 AM

    We just saw that Utah gave outdoor wood boilers in general, and Central Boiler specifically, thumbs up to sell their product in Utah. As residents of Minnesota, the home of Central Boiler, and property owners who live NEXT DOOR to an OWB, we only have one thing to say for sure... the citizens of Utah only have a smoky, unhealthier future ahead. As lifelong Minnesotans, our lives are changed forever by Central Boiler. Their product has drastically reduced our quality of life, our health, and peace of mind. It triggers severe asthma attacks in my wife and gives me bad headaches. Any time there's no wind, the smoke accumulates at ground level, making the outside of our property unusable. We can't ever open our windows-- our house can fill with acrid smoke in moments. And we live 400 feet from the stack! Our neighbor's dog was gassed to death, kenneled 50 feet from the source. (the canary in the coal mine?) A neighbor 200 feet away disconnected his smoke alarms because the OWB keeps setting them off. Our neighbor with the OWB has burned garbage, demolition materials, you name it. With a huge hatch and instant incineration, even a call to 911 and the police can't arrive fast enough to catch the illegal burning. Meanwhile our City gives him the thumbs up to burn burn burn.

    The "Quick facts about HB 394" flyer uses misdirection to mislead the reader to the emissions levels of OWB's. It only refers to the owner of the OWB and completely disregards the health and safety of those living in close proximity.

    Good luck, I hope you folks from Utah have good health insurance. You're going to need it!

    ReplyDelete