New wood boiler rules on verge of approval would limit warm-weather use
Friday, October 22, 2010 - 12:03 pm

A new set of regulations for outdoor wood boilers ensuring that new boilers burn 90 percent cleaner than older models has been submitted by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation for approval.

The new rule would limit outdoor boiler use Upstate to September through May.

The season-limiting rule has upset owners who use their boilers for hot water year-round.

If approved by the state Environmental Board at its Oct. 25 meeting, the regulation would go into effect 30 days after its filing with the state Secretary of State.

DEC says that they limited an earlier proposal in response to comments at public meetings and elsewhere. Their aim, they say, was to ensure that new outdoor wood boilers are cleaner and that existing boilers have a reduced impact on air quality.

The regulation also includes fuel restrictions and stack height standards for existing as and new OWBs which will reduce the impact of their emissions on neighboring property owners. New OWBs will be required to be set back a minimum of 100 feet from neighboring properties.

A provision in an earlier proposal to phase out the use of older OWBs has been removed and will be revisited later.

The new rule says that OWBs cannot be used in the Northern Heating Zone – most of Upstate -- from June 1 through Aug. 31.

The text of the rule is at