Wood stove exchange program boosted for 2013

Wildsight is continuing with its wood stove exchange program after a contribution of $13,500 from the provincial program.

Wildsight is continuing with its wood stove exchange program after a contribution of $13,500 from the Provincial Wood Stove Exchange Program.

Erna Jensen-Shill said the funding will help the group continue to provide the service for home owners looking to make the air around them a little cleaner.

“Wildsight is looking forward to continuing our work on the Wood Stove Exchange program in 2013, with a focus on the communities of Cranbrook and Kimberley, and surrounding regions,” Jensen-Shill said.

The funding is being dolled out in a number of communities in the province for a total of $192,000.

The program has been in place since 2008 when the B.C. government partnered with the BC Lung Association. It encourages home owners to bring in their old model wood stoves and exchange them for a new, cleaner burning model.

The province estimates there are 116,000 older stoves working in the province, but the province has seen 5,000 of them replaced.

“The wood stove exchange program is a wonderful way of working towards improving air quality, along with education components focusing on the importance of good appliances, seasoned fire wood, and proper burning techniques in optimizing the efficiency of wood heat, while minimizing adverse effects on air quality,” Jensen-Shill said.

The province is also informing residents that using dry, well-seasoned wood can improve the efficiency of your existing stove by providing 15 per cent more heat.

Burning small, very hot fires will limit the smoke, ensure that all fuel is used up and keep your home from smelling of wood smoke.

Having your wood burning appliances inspected yearly by a certified technician is also important.

“It is important to replace old wood stoves with newer, cleaner burning models, not just for air quality but also for personal health,” said Bill Bennett, MLA for Kootenay East.

“That’s why the BC Lung Association supports the Provincial Wood Stove Exchange Program, which I hope will encourage many homeowners to upgrade their stoves.”

For more information see www.bcairquality.ca.