EPA makes changes to wood stove certification program

By Erin Voegele | May 24, 2021

The U.S EPA in April announced it is taking several actions to address concerns about the methods and manner in which new wood stoves are being tested for compliance with the 2015 new source performance standards (NSPS).

“Since the 2015 rule, EPA has relied on the third-party certification review and assurances that the test reports coming from test laboratories are accurate and represent all required documentation collected in a manner consistent with regulatory requirements and specific test method criteria,” the agency said in a statement posted to its website. “Findings identified recently by stakeholders indicate that there may be serious and systematic problems to be addressed in the third-party certification process.”

The EPA recently sent letters to EPA-approved tested laboratories and EPA-approved third-party certifiers, announcing the agency is taking actions to ensure that the testing and certification of wood burning appliances is being conducted appropriately.

According to the EPA, it is reviewing more than 240 currently certified wood heater test reports and will take action to ensure only compliance devices are available on the market for the public. The agency also said it is increasing the review of all test reports for new woodstove certification applications to ensure compliancy. In addition, the EPA said it is undertaking a multi-year project to improve compliance measurement methods for testing new wood stoves and is working with stakeholders to collect and review data and solicit feedback on the testing prior to proposal of the new test method.

John Ackerly, founder and president of the Alliance for Green Heat, discussed the impact the EPA’s action is having on wood stove manufacturers and efforts to establish a national wood stove change out program in a blog post published last month. 

Additional information is available on the EPA’s website