Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Rick Sullivan today announced a new round of the Commonwealth’s Woodstove Change-out Program, committing up to $1 million to assist residents in replacing their inefficient woodstoves for healthier, higher-efficiency models.
“The Patrick Administration is committed to supporting programs that allow everyone - from residents to businesses to municipalities - to get involved in our clean energy initiatives,” said Secretary Sullivan. “These newer stoves save families money every month and lead to cleaner air for all citizens of the Commonwealth.”
The program, first launched as a pilot last winter, provides vouchers of $750 or $2,000 to Massachusetts residents looking to trade in their existing non-U.S. Environmental Protection Agency-certified stoves for models that use less wood and release less pollution into the air.
Secretary Sullivan made the announcement at The Fire Place in Whately, which redeemed the most vouchers of any retailer in the Commonwealth under the pilot program. In total, last year’s pilot program assisted in the replacement of more than 450 old, inefficient stoves.
The Commonwealth Woodstove Change-out Program is administered by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC), and funded jointly by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP), Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources (DOER) and MassCEC.
“Clean energy adoption comes in many shapes and sizes, and this program allows residents to participate in Massachusetts’ thriving clean energy economy by choosing to upgrade their woodstoves,” said MassCEC CEO Alicia Barton. “We’re excited to build upon the success of last year’s program and continue helping residents take control of their energy use right in their own homes.”
“It is always exciting when we can make cleaner energy more accessible to more of the Commonwealth’s residents,” said DOER Commissioner Mark Sylvia. “These vouchers will help residents save money on upfront costs and monthly wood costs, while helping the Commonwealth reduce air pollution.”
“One of our top environmental priorities is to greatly improve air quality across the Commonwealth, and this program will continue to retire older woodstoves and replace them with lower-emission models,” said MassDEP Commissioner Kenneth Kimmell. “Once installed, the new woodstoves will significantly reduce fine particle pollution that threatens the health of our citizens and our communities.”
Low-income residents who provide proof of enrollment in the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), MassHealth or Women, Infants and Children (WIC) are eligible for a $2,000 rebate, while other Massachusetts residents are eligible for a $750 rebate.
MassCEC is accepting applications until March 4, 2014, at which time properly-completed applications will be evaluated and qualified for vouchers.
To qualify, residents must have an existing woodstove to trade in and must receive approval for a rebate before purchasing the woodstove. Woodstoves purchased before a rebate is awarded are not eligible for the program. Residents can apply for a voucher by submitting a paper application or online application. Access the online application, and more information on the program, by visiting www.masscec.com/woodstove. Once an application is approved, MassCEC will issue a voucher which can be redeemed at any participating woodstove dealer in Massachusetts for a discount on the retail price of the stove. MassCEC will then reimburse retailers for the value of the voucher.