FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 5, 2019
Lyz Hoffman, Public Information Officer, (805) 961-8819
APCD To Launch Voluntary Woodsmoke Reduction Program on December 12
Program offers $500-$5,000 to replace fireplaces, woodstoves
SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. — Today, Santa Barbara County Air Pollution Control District (District) announced that the annual voluntary Woodsmoke Reduction Program that helps cover the costs of replacing residential wood-burning fireplaces or woodstoves with cleaner alternatives will launch on December 12. The District will reimburse participating retailers (listed below) up to $5,000 for replacement projects for customers who live in state-designated low-income communities, and up to $1,000 for projects for other customers. To view the state’s map of low-income communities, visit www.arb.ca.gov/cc/capandtrade/auctionproceeds/lowincomemapfull.htm.
The woodstove or wood-burning fireplace to be replaced must be used as a primary source of heat, and can be swapped for an electric, gas, or propane device, or an EPA-certified wood-burning or pellet-burning home-heating device. This year’s program is open to homeowners and renters, as long as renters provide documented approval by the property owner.
In the fall and winter, people throughout the county contact the District with concerns about health effects of neighborhood woodsmoke. Woodsmoke contains gases and particulate matter, and can harm the lungs and heart. Smoke from fireplaces and woodstoves accounts for nearly a third of wintertime fine particle pollution in Santa Barbara County, according to state data.
The District has approximately $100,000 in funding available for this year’s program. The Woodsmoke Reduction Program is part of California Climate Investments, a statewide program that puts Cap-and-Trade dollars to work. The District’s program is in line with the state’s efforts to reduce levels of both particulate matter and black carbon, a short-lived climate pollutant emitted when wood burns. In the last two years, the District’s program has helped replace 86 woodstoves and fireplaces throughout Santa Barbara County.
“Replacing an old woodstove or fireplace can make a big difference in neighborhood air quality,” said District Director, Aeron Arlin Genet. “Making the switch provides an improved ease in heating your household, improved indoor air quality, and reduces fire hazards. I encourage homeowners and renters to take advantage of this opportunity.”