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EPA helps bring cleaner heat to Ravalli County, Montana

Release Date: 02/15/2008
Contact Information: Kane Quenemoen, HRDC Services Section, DPHHS, 406-447-4267 Jon Ebelt, Public Information Officer, DPHHS, 406-444-0936 Wendy Chipp, EPA, 303-312-6603, chipp.wendy@epa.gov

(Denver, Colo. -- February 15, 2008) A $100,000 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Woodstove Changeout Program will help bring cleaner heat to residents of Ravalli County in southwest Montana.

Montana public health officials are using the $100,000 grant to help replace old woodstoves for low-income residents who use wood as their primary source of heat. The Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services will offer up to $2,570 toward the cost of changing out older, more polluting stoves to EPA-approved, cleaner-burning heating devices. Old stoves will be disabled and recycled.

Woodstoves sold in the U.S. before 1992 can be a significant source of fine particle pollution, also known as PM 2.5. Montana has recommended that EPA designate Ravalli County as nonattainment for EPA’s daily fine particle standard, based on the results of outdoor air quality monitoring. Woodstove changeouts are one step states can take to help reduce particle pollution and improve air quality.

The Great American Woodstove Changeout campaign is EPA’s national effort to reduce pollution by replacing older woodstoves with EPA certified woodstoves, pellet stoves or fireplace inserts, or with electric or gas heating units.

For information on participating in the Ravalli County changeout, contact: Jim Wilson of the District XI Human Resource Council in Missoula, Mont. at 406-728-3710.