The NSPS for New Residential Wood Heaters
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) New Source Performance Standards (NSPS), the program which governs emissions for wood burning appliances, was updated for the first time in over 20 years February 2015. Initiated in 1988, the NSPS controls the manufacture, sale, and import of "wood heaters," and only affects new products not already installed in residences.
This revision impacts new residential wood and pellet stoves, hydronic heaters, and wood warm air furnaces. HPBA's legal, research, and legislative staff have worked hard to effect a positive outcome for our industry, members, and the public.
HPBA members do want some sort of standards in place. Our industry has spent millions of dollars and have worked hard to engage many stakeholders to try to get reasonable, achievable standards on place. We have some concerns with the final rule (specifically, with the Step 2 standards, which are set to be effective in May 2020), which is why we have challenged the rule in court. Unfortunately, EPA has declined to negotiate a settlement and HPBA will be meeting with its Solid Fuel Hearth Appliance Section to discuss next steps.
Effects of this rule on consumers:
- This rule does not affect products currently installed in homes; it only affects products manufactured and sold today.
- Increased product costs. The Step 2 standards, if they take effect in 2020, will dramatically increase the cost of all the regulated product categories and will eliminate some of the products you see today permanently from the market.
- Elimination or reduction of certain product categories. Wood warm air furnaces will likely no longer be available due to the technological infeasibility of the Step 2 standards. Residential hydronic heaters will no longer be affordable for consumers after Step 2 is in effect. Consumers will be forced to find heating alternatives, such as natural gas or electric-fueled heaters, depending on what is available and affordable in their area.
- General Information for Retailers and Distributors
- FAQs on What Retailers Need to Know about Hangtags, Labels, and Owner's Manuals
- EPA's Final NSPS
- Letter from Congress to EPA Administrator McCarthy on Wood Warm Air Furnaces (November 2014)
- (August 2014)
- HPBA's Comments on the EPA's Proposed NSPS (May 2014)
The following external websites provide additional information about the EPA's current NSPS for New Residential Wood Heaters.