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Water Lake Landscape

Residential Appliance Incentives

A. State Appliance

Rebates
Although rebates are the incentive type that is most directly felt by the consumer, only one statewide rebate program for residential biomass heating units is active (in New Hampshire), and four statewide programs are expired. There are likely several factors contributing to this. The first is that rebates require a dedicated funding stream or pot of money, which in tough economic times is hard to come by (and easy to use up). Second, residential biomass heat has been overlooked in existing state renewable energy or energy efficiency grant programs, even though pellet stoves and boilers provide very affordable and clean heat. Rebates have been overwhelmingly used for smaller-scale changeout programs across the country, which are often driven by air quality concerns rather than renewable energy adoption. Regardless, rebates have often proved a successful incentive type for these programs. For more information, the section on Changeout Programs below.

Rebates are lump sums of money designed to cover a portion of the purchase cost of an appliance. The rebate is either given directly to the consumer upon proof of purchase or distributed through the wood/pellet stove retailer. Rebate sums can either be a flat rate, or a percentage of the total cost, which may be capped at a ceiling. The funds for rebates are often administered from a designated pot of money generally derived from public benefits funds . The fund is usually overseen by an affiliated government agency, in the case of wood stoves, Air Pollution Control Districts or State Energy Administrations. As a policy tool, rebates can be finely tuned in order to realize very specific policy goals. For example, some programs can provide greater rebates to low-income consumers, only allow consumers who have had an energy audit to be eligible, or only incentivize ultra-clean pellet systems.

Some rebate programs work by providing vouchers to the consumer to redeem at partner stores. The store cannot receive the reimbursement from the government agency until it first meets certain terms and conditions, for example, providing proof that the uncertified stove which is being replaced has been destroyed.

Strengths

  • Supports Market Transformation: The rebate provides one of the most direct and powerful means to influence consumers, drive market demand, and bring down costs over time. If rebates are deployed to only incentivize a certain type of appliance, such as stoves with over 75% efficiency or particulate emissions under 3 grams/hour, then the market in that region will favor more efficient or cleaner appliances.

  • Upfront Capital: Since a primary barrier to investing in biomass appliances is the upfront capital cost to homeowners, the prospect of cash-back often provides the needed impetus to purchase a new heating unit.

  • Attractive to Low-moderate Income Consumers: Since rebates effectively reduce the up-front cost, they offer low to moderate income households an opportunity to make an investment on an appliance for which they might otherwise have been unable to acquire sufficient funds.

  • Adjustable: Year to year grant amounts can be altered depending on the amount of funding, demand for the grant, or a scaling down process.

Weakness

  • Rebate Dependency: Customers may only purchase wood stove systems when there is a rebate offered, thus influencing the timing of the appliance purchase more than the decision to purchase an appliance. Consumer demand may diminish if a rebate is phased out too quickly or if the purchasing cost remains too high in the absence of this incentive.

  • Economically Unstable: If the purpose of the rebate program is to create jobs and grow the forestry/biomass heat industry, inflated consumer demand created by rebates can create a financial structure for industry that has the potential to become unsustainable without them. Fluctuating rebate amounts can make it difficult for industries to plan long-term growth strategies when faced with uncertain demand or demand cycles created by continual rebate programs.

  • Initial Administrative Burden: Rebate programs require agency oversight for the funding pool, the development of a dedicated funding stream and initial program development. If a rebate application is not carefully designed, it can be confusing and might act as a deterrent to interested consumers.

  • Unsecure Funding: Unlike tax incentives, or loan programs from bank partnerships, rebate programs require a dedicated source of funding. This capital is vulnerable to appropriation for other programs if there is not sufficient consumer interest and participation. Additionally, rebate programs use up their funding with no recovery, so program funds are depleted over time.

Recommendations

  • Educate: Any program promoting new wood burning appliances should be coupled with educational materials on clean burning practices. If new appliances are used incorrectly, the resulting air pollution could turn the public against wood burning and the program.

  • Ensure Program Continuity: The rebate programs should only be the beginning of a market transformation; one of the greatest after-effects of a rebate program is increased awareness of the technology. Additionally, since heating units are purchased infrequently, selecting a unit is a long-term decision, and a program spanning several years might be necessary to capture the largest market.

  • Partner with Dealers and Installers: Local dealers and installers can assist policy makers in promoting the rebate and provide valuable input into designing the rebate program.

  • Provide Straightforward Eligibility Rules: Consumers may be discouraged from the process if the rebate application is confusing or complex.

  • Effective Program Marketing: One of the most common downfalls of rebate programs is a lack of consumer participation due to a lack of awareness. If the program is not effectively marketed, it will not actually incentivize new consumers into purchasing a stove, but merely reward those who were already planning a purchase.

  • Declining Funding Blocks: Higher incentives at the beginning of the incentive program will encourage people to buy into the program early-on and stimulate interest. As the market develops, the grant amount should decline to wean the market and the industry off the incentive. This also acts to reflect cost reductions over time as the industry becomes more efficient.

  • Require Professional Installation/Inspection: While there are many individuals who may be able to safely and effectively install residential biomass heaters, there is still a large risk of people installing these units in an unsafe or incorrect manner. Professional installation avoids this risk while simultaneously providing an additional boost to the local economy. This does propose an added cost, which should be figured into the incentive program design.

Table 2: State Rebate Program

Case Study: New Hampshire Rebate Program

There is currently only one statewide program that significantly incentivizes new, first time purchases of biomass: the New Hampshire Wood Pellet Boiler Rebate Program. This program was launched April 1, 2010 and has undergone very specific changes. Unlike many rebate programs where the rebate is used as the funding tool in a changeout program (see the section on Changeouts below) the New Hampshire program goal is not primarily to address air quality issues, but rather to support the burgeoning New Hampshire pellet industry that holds great promise for the state economically, and to promote a renewable energy. To accomplish this goal, state officials worked with New Hampshire pellet industry leaders to discover where dollars could be best spent to grow the industry. They received a very specific answer: help develop the crucial bulk delivery system by incentivizing whole-house biomass boilers that require bulk delivery. The industry leaders pointed to one facet of their industry that was hindering further development. Pellet production was being inhibited by lack of consumer confidence in a secure supply of pellets, so incentivizing systems that require bulk delivery was the policy solution to this issue.

 

The program offers 30% of the unit purchase cost up to $6,000 dollars. While this is a large sum of money, it was not enough to significantly entice consumers to buy the expensive systems that met the original program requirements. Those top of the market systems cost around $21,000 and offer efficiency standards of 85% and other features such as self-cleaning capacity. In March, 2011, after only receiving six applicants, the program administrators altered the requirements to allow less-expensive boilers that require certain cleaning maintenance procedures for approximately every ton of premium pellets used, and are 80% efficient or greater to qualify as well.

The New Hampshire program serves as a good case study of rebate’s ability to serve as a highly focused policy tool, and the challenges of gauging the correct incentive amount. It also showcases the need for flexibility in the program so that it can be altered according to consumer response.

Policy considerations
Compared to tax credits, rebates are a particularly important incentive tool for wood and pellet stoves because these often appeal to lower income populations who generally cannot take advantage of tax credits (See the section on Tax Credits below). Rebate programs for stoves could be combined with weatherization assistance programs to provide low-income populations with a very cost effective way to dramatically reduce fossil fuel usage, secure their own fuel (in the case of wood stoves) and reduce reliance on fuel assistance programs.

As of April 2011, 19 states had programs that provided rebates for solar photovoltaic panels. This does not even include the local, utility or non-profit rebate programs. The cost to the states to displace fossil fuel use through solar PV rebates is enormous compared to rebates for the cleanest wood and pellet stoves, and most moderate and low-income residents are not served by these programs. Including certain biomass appliances in rebate programs could help states better serve lower income populations while accomplishing many of the same policy goals. While rebate programs could include the cleanest pellet appliances in any jurisdiction, as they are in Europe, cordwood appliances should be limited to rural areas, and could target families that rely on oil, propane or electricity – all very expensive fuels that also have significant environmental impacts.

While rebate programs offer the most tangible incentive to consumers, they also require the most funding and must either be a short-term program or require a dedicated funding stream. For this reason rebate programs are often used in changeout programs, which have discreet goals (for example to replace non-EPA stoves in an area) that can be accomplished with a shorter program. If the policy goals are more long-term, seeking to shift people toward energy efficient or renewable energy lifestyles, then they should be accompanied by a long term program in order to reach full effectiveness.


Tax Incentives
Tax incentives are a popular method for all levels of government to fund wood stove programs. These programs do not require an upfront cost or a direct source of funding, but do take away future revenue. This loss must be quantified and accounted for before a tax program is passed. Additionally, a drawback all tax incentive programs share is that they are of little use to low-income households that pay little if any taxes. If a program goal is to address low-income issues, tax incentives are not the correct incentive type.

Tax Credits
Tax Credits are a set dollar amount that represents a reduction in the amount of money owed toward State or Federal Taxes. Tax Credits are the most valuable end-of-year benefit, because they directly reduce the amount of taxes owed dollar for dollar. By subtracting directly from taxes owed instead of from income calculations, a tax credit can be over three times as valuable than a tax deduction. State renewable energy tax credit programs are generally administrated by state revenue departments or other state agencies, and range in amount from $1,000 to $10,500 (although the higher incentives are primarily for solar or wind installations). The National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s report on renewable energy programs discovered the tax credits are generally, “not the primary motivating factor influencing purchasing decisions but often help to ‘seal the deal’.” However a 2009 study of solar incentive programs found that income tax incentives reached more participants than the cash incentive programs.

Example A tax credit of $500 for someone in the 28% tax bracket is equivalent to a tax deduction of $1,700.

Strengths

  • Easy to Administer: Tax credits do not require a dedicated funding stream or agency oversight for the fund.

  • Strongest Tax Incentive: The tax credit is the most tangible financial tax incentive and can act as a strong spur to purchasing a certain type of wood stove.

  • Easy to Alter: Tax credit levels can be modified based on changes in funding availability, market shifts or program participation.

Weaknesses

  • Drain on Budget: Since tax credits do not draw from a pot of money, and thus do not restrict the number of applicants, more applicants than anticipated can place an unexpectedly large burden on the budget.

  • Excludes Portion of Wood Stove Users: Unlike rebate or loan programs, tax credits are not useful to low-income consumers who pay little to no taxes. This can be an egregious oversight since a higher percentage of low-income households rely on wood heat as their primary heating source.

  • Tax Credit Amounts too Small to Make Wide Air Quality Improvement: The results of a tax credit program in Oregon suggest that a state-wide tax credit will have too dispersed an effect to have a positive influence on air quality throughout the state. If seeking to improve air quality, more resources should be applied to the non-attainment areas first.

  • Too weak of an Incentive for those not in the Market: The same Oregon program, as well as the Montana State tax credit program, suggest that the tax credit likely only influences those already in the market for a stove, rather than drawing new consumers.

Recommendations

  • Administer program through energy office: The state revenue department is often the first choice to administer a tax incentive, but the state energy office can contribute additional advantages to the program. Among these are “better coordination with the design and administration of other energy programs and outreach activities, enabling more detailed tracking of program performance data and fostering partnerships with the renewable industry in promoting the incentive.”

Table 3: State Tax Credit Programs

Case Studies/Policy Considerations
Oregon and Montana are the two states that have instituted tax credits for biomass appliance purchases. These programs have been in existence for a relatively long time and incentivize first time purchases for the purposes of promoting energy efficiency and renewable energy. The Oregon Residential Energy Tax Credit is a larger renewable energy/energy efficiency program that was amended in 2007 to include thermal biomass stoves that meet the strict state emission standards of under 4.5 grams/hour (g/hr) of particulates for wood stoves and under 2.5 g/hr for pellet stoves. Although providing a tax incentive with a $300 cap might not be enough to entice those not already in the market, the program does steer some consumers away from uncertified stoves.

The Montana program offers an incentive of $500 per taxpayer (spouses filing jointly can claim up to $1,000). Roughly 1,400 wood stoves have been financed by this program. The credit was introduced in 1977 and was initially designed to address non-attainment issues. This program may have experienced one of the possible drawbacks of incentive programs. Some Montana retailers have raised their appliance prices by $500 compared to surrounding states to effectively take the $500 tax incentive as profit to their company. Price adjusting among retailers to compensate for incentive funds is a danger facing many long-term incentive programs, but it can possibly be avoided with loan or incentive programs with a limited lifespan or declining funding blocks.


Tax Deductions
Tax Deductions are subtracted from taxable income and reflect an expense. They are only valuable to the consumer if they itemize their deductions instead of taking the standard deduction. If itemized, a deduction is generally worth about 28% for many households; less for lower tax brackets and more for higher tax brackets. For example, if a tax deduction of 30% if offered for a $10,000 renewable energy system- such as a pellet boiler, then the homeowner can deduct $3,000 from his taxable income. The actual savings, however, is equal to the amount of the deduction multiplied by the tax rate. For someone in a 28% tax bracket, this would correspond to an $840 savings.

Strengths

  • Low Budget Impact: Tax deductions have a relatively small impact on the budget, and can therefore be a primarily educational/symbolic program for small cost. Even offering a small incentive can be effective in signaling support for certain technologies and increasing awareness of them.

Weaknesses

  • Not a Significant Incentive: Most tax deductions are too insignificant to influence consumers to purchase a biomass appliance.

  • Excludes Portion of Wood Stove Users: Renters and those who do not invest large amounts of money often do not find itemized deductions worthwhile. Additionally, tax deductions are not useful to low-income consumers who pay little to no taxes. This is an egregious oversight because a higher percentage of low-income households rely on wood heat as their primary heating source.

Table 4: State Tax Deduction Programs

Case Studies: Property Tax Exemptions
Unfortunately residents have rarely claimed the Montana property tax exemption. Generally the small scale residential stoves are not even assessed for their value in most counties, so people wouldn’t derive any benefit from applying for this type of tax exemption. The majority of applicants for the property tax exemption in Montana are large-scale commercial biomass system operators. The two incentive programs in Montana are both tax related, which has the positive effect of not actively removing funds out of the current budget or requiring as much administrative oversight as other programs such as rebates. However, neither program is particularly useful to many low-income households that do not pay enough taxes to make this incentive significant.

New Hampshire merely has a local option rule on the books, not a statewide program. While smaller scale programs such as this can sometimes bypass complex state politics, and allow local areas to adopt policies that may be unpopular in the rest of the state, this also creates confusing variation in the state and uneven incentives.

New York offers 100% of the assessed value of an EPA certified wood or pellet stove as a property tax exemption. The property tax exemption in New York is coupled with a low-interest loan program for EPA phase II stoves.


Policy Considerations
Property tax exemptions are rarely utilized by the homeowner, and it is unlikely that they act to incentivize new stove purchases. As a relatively small incentive, property-tax exemptions might need to be bundled with other incentive programs to be significant; otherwise, they will more likely act as a signal of support for the technology only. Additionally, if states only had a property tax exemption, they would be overlooking the large percentage of wood burners who are renters and not incentivized by property tax exemptions.

Sales Tax Exemptions
Sales Tax Exemptions are an upfront discount on the purchase price of a biomass heating system. In the case of the larger biomass boiler systems, this exemption could be significant. Sales tax exemptions for appliance purchases currently only exist in Virginia. Several other states have tax exemptions to help finance biomass fuel purchases. In Maryland, New York and Oregon, fuels such as pellets or cordwood used for heating purposes are exempt from the sales tax (see Chapter 5, Section B: Residential Fuel Incentives). 

Strengths

  • Assists the purchase of whole-house systems: For larger, more expensive units such as whole –house heating systems, a sales tax exemptions can help to fill the funding gap after other incentives such as rebate are applied to the purchase.

Weaknesses

  • Not a Significant Incentive: Smaller stoves that don’t supplant the home’s complete heating bill might need a more tangible type of funding.

Policy Considerations
Virginia has a sales tax exemption for multifuel heating appliances, and there have been similar exemptions for other renewable energy technologies in other states. This incentive could be significant for the more expensive whole-house heating systems where an exemption from a 6% sales tax on a $20,000 system yields $1,200 in savings. Many Virginia residents could also benefit from an expansion of eligible technologies to include the cleanest burning modern cordwood stoves as well. A simple policy fix in many states of adding biomass heating systems to the existing sales tax laws would be a straightforward method of reducing the disparity in renewable energy incentives.

Table 6: State Sales Tax Exemption Programs

Loan Programs

Loan programs are designed to provide low-interest or interest free secure loans that are more appealing and more available to the consumer than other loans on the market. The loans are backed by the state and are often more forgiving of poor credit history, providing assistance to cash-challenged customers who can neither purchase a system outright nor secure a loan from a traditional lending institute. Loan interest ranges from 0-6%, and repayment terms can range from three to twenty years. There have historically been a larger percentage of loan programs for wood heat than either grant or tax credit programs, and many loan programs have an unprecedented longevity. Several loan programs, such as the Nebraska, Idaho and Connecticut State programs, have been in operation for over 20 years, primarily due to the loan investment returning to the fund. State loan programs are funded through a number of different means including revolving loan funds created with the petroleum violation escrow funds (also known as “oil overcharge” funds), air-quality noncompliance fees, bond sales, annual appropriations or public benefit funds. All but one of the loan programs for wood heat has an energy efficiency goal as opposed to a renewable energy goal.

Strengths

  • Sustainable: When loans are given for biomass appliances that have a proven short payback period, the loan fund becomes self-sustaining as the initial investment is returned by the homeowner to be reinvested in other homes.

  • Fills Lending Gap: Private lenders may be less familiar with the renewable energy technologies, and so are sometimes less likely to approve loans for biomass appliances than the state program.

  • Does not Require Dedicated Funding Stream: Unlike rebate programs, loan programs do not rely on a pot of money or dedicated funding stream that is subject to political reallocation and requires a constant influx of money. 

  • Avoids Retailer Price Adjustment: Retailers sometimes take advantage of rebate or tax incentive by deliberately increasing retail prices equal to the incentive amount. This is far less likely to happen with loan programs.

  • Provides Up-front Capital on Expensive Systems: Whole-house heating systems, such as advanced pellet boilers, can cost around $20,000. This high up-front capital investment can be a significant barrier to technology adoption, and requires much greater incentives than most programs provide. Even the 2009-2010 federal tax credit only allowed up to $1,500 for eligible systems, rendering most people either unwilling or incapable to spend $20,000 of their own money. Loan programs overcome this barrier by providing low-interest upfront capital.

  • Can be Created by Agencies: Unlike tax code programs which require legislative approval. Loan programs (as well as rebate programs) can be designed and implemented without getting involved in a lengthy legislative process.

Weaknesses

  • Not a Significant Incentive for Less-expensive Systems: For stoves costing a few thousand dollars, a loan program may not be as tempting of an incentive as an upfront rebate.

  • Limited Consumers: As it is a loan program, some consumers with poor credit may not qualify, which could cut off some segments of the population in need of assistance switching to an affordable fuel source.

  • High Capital Requirements: The establishment of a loan fund requires a large initial source of funding. Public loan funds are also not able to leverage dollars in the same manner private lenders can.

  • Principle Risk: The fund is responsible for defaulted loans, which can deplete it over time.

  • Competition with private lenders: Low-interest loan programs can have an edge over private lenders and be perceived as competing with them.

Recommendations

  • Calculate Potential Cost Savings Individually: Calculate savings on a case-by-case basis to ensure switching from the existing system to a particular biomass system is worth the financial investment. The Idaho and Nebraska state loan programs implement this tool.

  • Joint Programming: Couple the loan program with an energy auditing program to ensure maximal energy efficiency gains for the investment. Loan programs are generally most effective when coupled with a program that offers up front discounts on purchase price. The very low-income consumers may still be unqualified for even the typically more generous state loan programs, so a grant provision for this sub-section would help to fill this gap.

  • Outreach with Stakeholder Groups: Partner with renewable energy advocacy groups and businesses to build support and awareness of the program and to leverage marketing activities.

Table 7: State Loan Programs

Case Studies: Loan Programs
The New York Residential Loan Program administered by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), offers loans at 4% less than the current lender rate. Both pellet stoves and EPA phase II wood stoves are eligible for the loan if they are to be used as the primary heating source. Since the overall policy goal of this program is to assist New Yorkers to become more energy efficient, consumers must first participate in the NYSERDA Home Performance with Energy Star Program that conducts a home energy audit and makes recommendations on what the Loan Program should finance. Coupling an incentive program for wood heat appliances with an overall energy audit is sound policy since it guarantees a greater return on investment in terms of the amount of energy conserved and money saved. The program further maximizes its impact by focusing on lower income households that are less likely to be able to afford energy improvements. Only individuals at or below 80% of the State or Area Median Income (whichever is greater) are eligible for the loan.

Built into the New York Residential Loan Program, is a flexible interest of 4% less than the current lending rate (with a floor of 3%). This financing mechanism ensures the program will almost always be more attractive than other loans on the market.

Key features to this program’s success:
 

  • Requires an energy audit

  • Focus on less wealthy families

The Idaho Residential Loan Program has been in operation for over twenty-three years, and interest in wood and pellet stoves has fluctuated throughout its relatively long history. Generally there has been greater and more consistent interest in the wood stoves, perhaps because of the relative newness of pellets as a technology and the fluctuation in pellet fuel prices. Over the course of the program there have been less than ten whole home biomass heating systems purchased using this incentive. This loan program is also designed to be quite flexible, allowing it to adjust to new technologies and focus on new products and emerging technologies (such as pellet stoves). One notable feature of the program is that a mathematical model is used to assess whether to approve the loan. This model calculates the individual’s savings based on the ten year payback calculation and calculates whether or not the loan is a wise financial energy investment.

Key features to this program’s success:

  • Mathematical model to calculate potential energy & cost savings over 10 years.

The Nebraska Dollar and Energy Saving Loan Program, which is one of the oldest loan programs in the country, was established in the 1970’s with Oil Overcharge Funds. The initial endowment was $10-20 million, and due to the regenerating nature of the loan program, that money has lasted over twenty years. Recently, the program was increased to $36 million with American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds. More than 26,000 loans that have made during the life of the program, which have allowed for an estimated $250 million in energy savings. Fireplace inserts automatically qualify for a loan, as they represent a potential energy source, along with sealing the building’s envelope by plugging the fireplace. Wood and pellet stoves must meet EPA Phase II requirements to be eligible for the loan, but are only approved if the homeowner can prove using a departmental calculation that their particular household will achieve significant money savings (an example calculation is provided in the appendix). The homeowner must recycle their current heating source so it does not tempt the wood stove owners to switch back to the fossil fuel heat after a year or two of wood.

"In my opinion the loan program is better than a grant, because the money comes back to the program. Because of this, the program could virtually last forever without additional funds." -Bruce Hauschild P.E.

Key features to this program’s success:

  • Applicants must prove they can meet a 15 year payback period, or their loan is denied.

The Connecticut Energy Conservation Loan Program does not require that stoves meet any emissions or efficiency requirements, which could lead to air quality issues and the purchasing of stoves that might not produce optimum heat for the fuel burned. The program is primarily designed to assist low-moderate income residents afford their energy bills, and it has several tailored provisions that truly focus on this policy goal. Only those within 200% of the federal poverty line are eligible (there is a separate loan program with no income restrictions), the state does not require a set credit score and accepts applicants that private institutions would not. The state also makes ‘health and safety’ exceptions and can delay the loan repayment requirements for a year. For senior citizen applicants, payment can be delayed up until sale of the home, and the very lowest income loan applicants (who can demonstrably not pay the loan back in the regular time frames) may receive a loan coupled with a limited grant program. 

“With this program, the state gets it’s money back and helps homeowners lower their energy costs.” -Ernesto Guardardo, CHIF

Key features to this program’s success:

  • Low-income focused program that will delay loan payment or give grants to very low-income families.

The Montana Alternative Energy Revolving Loan Program is the only state loan program with a renewable energy focus. As a renewable energy program, it has been able to take advantage of the allocated air quality penalties gathered by the Montana Department of Environmental Quality. It also received funding from the ARRA funds. This program has seen much more interest toward solar and ground source heat pumps than for biomass heating appliances. Out of the 137 loans that the program has administered since its inception, only 15 have been for biomass heating equipment (including EPA Phase II stoves, pellet stoves, and outdoor wood boilerss). Since the program has a minimum closing fee of $250 for each loan, the comparatively smaller loans for wood or pellet stoves are not as attractive as the loans for larger, more expensive solar PV or geothermal systems.

Policy Considerations  
Loan programs can be useful to many low-income consumers, however those with exceptionally poor credit might not be eligible and would benefit more from an alternate incentive type. Some families with adequate credit will be able to afford a system’s down-payment and the over-time payment schedule of a loan far better than a rebate assisted purchase. Interestingly, low-interest loans have been the most common state incentive method used for biomass technology. This is perhaps because almost all of the state programs are broader renewable energy/energy efficiency loan programs that include biomass with other eligible technologies.

Many of the state loan programs have been in existence for several decades, a claim few other stove incentive programs can make. Since loan programs do require significant start up funds, they are hard to establish in lieu of special circumstances providing a large pool of money, such as the Oil Overcharge Funds in the 1970’s. The longevity of loan programs is primarily due to the fact that with careful administration and only approving loans that have demonstrated energy savings, a loan program can be self-sustaining. This is a very valuable trait for an incentive aimed at achieving long-term policy goals. Since heating appliances typically have a long lifespan, effecting a significant market shift towards efficient wood heating devices necessarily takes many years. Loan programs are well poised to maintain long-term support.

Changeout Programs
A wood stove changeout program is a campaign to replace high-particulate emitting old stoves, with new cleaner ones. Policy goals include reducing air pollution caused by wood smoke, assisting low-income households to afford a more efficient heating source and removing unsafe older stoves from circulation. Financing programs on the state level generally take the form of rebates. On the local level, financing is almost always through rebates or grants, though currently two on-going statewide programs rely on the somewhat weaker incentive of a tax deduction. The majority of changeout programs require certified proof of destruction and/or recycling of the old heating unit either from the retailer or a local recycling program. Funding is often sourced from a combination of state, federal, and industry groups like the Hearth, Patio and Barbeque Association (HPBA) or smaller wood stove retailers.           

Because woodstoves traditionally have a very long lifespan, they often remain in use for 30 – 50 years. As a result, the majority of wood stoves in the US are still not EPA certified, even though the EPA certification program began in 1988. Pollution from older stoves or exempt stoves can be a serious health concern, and one of the best ways to remove them from circulation is a changeout program. Changeout programs can be carefully designed to meet a wide variety of policy goals, such as the program in Klamath Falls that focuses on low income families.

Example:


Klamath, OR

The Klamath Falls Program is designed to assist low-income families in replacing polluting stoves. Low-income households are eligible for 100% of the cost to upgrade from an uncertified wood stove to a premium efficiency wood or pellet stove, while non-low income households are only eligible for $500 towards a premium efficiency wood stove or $750 for a pellet stove. However this program benefited greatly from a unique opportunity of a large quantity of one-time only stimulus funds.
 

Changeout programs have been part of the public mindset on the West Coast for years which gives program officers in the area a distinct advantage: The “why” of a changeout program is a more understood subject since many communities already have a baseline idea of the harms that polluting wood stoves can cause. On the East Coast and other areas however, there is a much greater need for education before the changeout program can occur. Eastern changeout coordinators are often unprepared for the level of public indifference since much of the literature on the subject is sourced from Western communities.
 

Strengths

  • Improves Air Quality: The Libby Montana changeout program (described in detail below) demonstrated that removing high polluting stoves has the potential to significantly improve both outdoor airsheds and indoor air quality and help an EPA non-attainment area reach attainment for particulate matter and remain that way.

  • Politically Attractive: A changeout program allows for the removal of polluting appliances without denying a source of heat to vulnerable populations. Instead of banning the use of polluting appliances outright, providing a cash incentive for an upgrade coupled with a sunset clause on old appliances is much more beneficial.

  • Increases Public Safety: Old stoves (pre-1990) often have age-damage, such as a cracked firebox, which can make the units likely to leak smoke into living areas or be a fire hazard. These stoves are also more likely to be installed improperly due to lack of building permit requirements.

  • Concise Program: The goal of replacing EPA exempt or uncertified stoves from an airshed is easily measured and can result from a short term program. A focused 6-12 month campaign can raises awareness about clean burning and emissions, build excitement, help generate in-kind donations, etc.

  • Most Efficient use of Public Funds for Air Quality: If a program’s goals are improving air quality, focusing public funds on non-EPA stoves is the best return on investment.

  • Improves Heating Efficiency of a Home: New stoves offer drastic efficiency improvements, especially compared to an old, uncertified device. This will also result in yearly savings since a more efficient stove requires less fuel.

Weaknesses

  • Requires a Large Incentive: Unlike programs offering money to install a first time system, changeouts attempt to entice people to exchange what may be a functional heating device with a new purchase. Because of this, a substantial incentive must be offered, especially if the target is demographic is lower income households or if the program is operating in an economically stressed time.

  • Higher Administrative Burden: The additional paperwork associated with certifying the exchange/recycling/destruction of the old/uncertified stoves can be significant if the program is not designed smoothly.

  • Rebate/changeout Dependency: Due to the increasing frequency of changeout programs, especially in states such as California or Washington, some stove owners may wait to replace an older stove until a changeout incentive is offered.

  • Abuse Potential: When absent a mechanism to minimize abuse, people can be tempted to take advantage of the program by changing out high-polluting stoves that were not actively used, or by changing out multiple stoves for the same dwelling and then selling the new stove at a profit. Some programs counter this by requiring pictures of the old stove installed in the home, the address of each dwelling, etc.

Recommendations

  • General: Rebates are the best source of funding for a change out program, as people generally need a larger and more tangible incentive to replace an appliance that is still functional. Tax incentives are likely to miss a large section of the wood stove using population: low-income households who pay little taxes. This is a particularly egregious oversight since low-income households are more likely to own older, pre-1990 stoves.

  • Air Quality: To achieve air quality goals, the changeout program must have an educational component to reach its full potential of cleaner burning, and to ameliorate poor burning practices in older stoves.

  • General: Program designers should consider settlement agreement projects as a valuable source of funding- both Supplemental Environmental Projects and mitigation project are a flexible means to fund a program.

  • General: To alleviate governmental staff hours, negotiate the responsibility of certifying the destruction of the old stoves on retailers.

  • General: Partner with appliance dealers to implement a strong advertising campaign.

  • General: Time the changeout to begin in the heating off-season in order to avoid overloading dealers.

  • General: One possible way to create a funding stream is to add a small fee onto the sale of new stoves in order to finance changeout campaigns or clean burning education. Although the low level of new stove sales, relative to the number of existing stoves, ensures that it will take a long time to accumulate enough resources for a meaningful program. 

  • General: The incentive amount should not be much less than what the stove would be worth on the second hand market (the conveniences of not having to locate a buyer for an old stove is an additional enticement).

  • Air Quality: In high air pollution areas, when possible ban future installation of second hand older stoves that are not EPA certified, and certain wood stoves exempt from EPA regulation.

  • Air Quality: Require that new stoves meet emission standards stricter than the current, lax EPA standards.  Most changeouts require the Washington State 4.5 g/hr emission maximum, but a few require even stricter limits.

  • General: Provide larger rebates for lower income families and/or give them priority when funding is limited.

  • Air Quality: In high air pollution areas, restrict non-EPA qualified fireplace installation

  • Air Quality: Requiring the replacement of non-EPA stoves upon sale of a home is a more passive way to run a changeout program, as it is slower acting. However, over time, it is an excellent way to effect change, as it bundles the cost of a stove changeout with the sale of the house, making it very affordable to the homeowner.

  • General: Community block grants are interesting options where the local area can offer low- or no-interest loans to homeowners to replace the stove.  The city then places a lien on the house until the loan is paid off.

  • General: Middle income households may respond to a low interest loan program administered through a local bank.

Case Studies: Changeouts

Crested Butte
Beginning in 1986, the Crested Butte Colorado Changeout represented the first time that air quality officials partnered with industry to replace non-EPA certified stoves. Not only was Crested Butte facing particulate matter issues, but more importantly to the town, it was facing visibility impairments that threatened to damage the area’s reputation as a vacation destination. The community voted to authorize three years of “real estate changeouts”(requiring replacement of uncertified stoves upon sale of home) assuming that those would remove the majority of old stoves, followed by another campaign to encourage the maximum number of changeouts. With the state closely monitoring air quality, the Hearth Industry arranged discounts on a small number of models for a single summer.  The town of Crested Butte also adopted an ordinance based on the concept that any home which had not changed out would be levied a ‘polluters fee’ on their municipal water bill, of $30/month for up to three years.  At the end of three years, it would be illegal to use any old, non-certified stoves.  Most of the residents took action during the key summer, and the result was a 59.5% reduction in particulates from one winter to the next, (after modeling for similar meteorology) according to the Colorado Department of Health.

Key Components of Crested Butte Changeout
1)Upgrade of existing woodstoves to certified units whenever a home was sold.
2) Stiffer insulation standards for new homes.
3) A requirement that all woodstoves in town be upgraded within three years (September 1989) or every household that had not upgraded would be required to pay a $30/month polluter’s fee. The fee option would expire after three years, at which time it would be illegal to use any uncertified appliance.
4) An exemption from this ordinance for residents who had burned coal since the 1930’s .

-John Crouch, Hearth, Patio, & Barbeque Association

By charging a ‘polluter’s fee’ on the continued use of non-certified woodstoves after a set date, the changeout rebate became even more attractive since fees paid during the three year drawdown could have been used to buy a new stove. This ‘carrot and stick’ method, which incorporated both incentives and regulations, has seldom been replicated in other changeouts, but is a very effective way to increase changeout participation. The program was overall successful, partly because it set several deadlines discouraging uncertified stoves before finally outlawing them.

Libby Montana
The Libby Montana Changeout Program is one of the most publicized and ambitious changeout programs to date. The Hearth Patio and Barbeque Association (HPBA) partnered with the EPA, the Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and Libby County Officials to replace all uncertified wood stoves in a single air shed. Over four years they replaced 1188 stoves, with significant funding coming from partnering organizations as well as other sources. 

The Libby, Montana Changeout program was extremely successful on a number of counts. In addition to reaching the goal of switching out 1,200 old/uncertified stoves within the allotted time frame, the program was also able to strike a balance between ensuring that those who could not afford a stove, regardless of rebate amount, received one, and not spending too many funds on too high of a rebate for those who could afford it. The program first targeted lower income families by giving away the first 300 stoves to qualified households, and then replacing 900 more stoves by offering a rebate. Though the program could have benefited from more time to complete the changeout, experts suggest that it took place in the minimum amount of time necessary to be a success. The public was educated about proper stove use while the program itself was well publicized, making it a model for future changeout programs. Most importantly, independent research demonstrated that both indoor and outdoor levels of PM 2.5  and other toxic air pollutants were reduced from pre-changeout levels. Some sources cite a reduction of as much as 37% for outdoor particulate pollutants and a 72% reduction indoors. Three key lessons from Libby include: 1) even offering full replacements for low income families did not ensure that everyone who qualified applied for the program, many needed direct one-on-one contact, 2) when addressing a whole town, there may be old units (such as wood furnaces) and consumers (particularly older men) who consume a disproportionate share of the local coordinators’ time, and  3) it may be very useful for the local coordinator to be an older man, particularly with experience in construction, and definitely from a household that heats with wood. 

Table 8: Local Scale Changeouts

Great Lakes States
The Great Lakes States program was perhaps the largest changeout to date, geographically speaking. The areas covered included the Georgian Bay region of Ontario, Canada, and the states of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, western New York, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin. One of the most notable aspects of this program is the number of different partnerships involved; the program was led by the North Central Hearth Products Association (NCHPBA), in partnership with the industry groups Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association (HPBA), MidStates HPBA and Midwest HPBA. Supporting government and participating organizations included the EPA, the Minnesota Pollution Control Authority (PCA), the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR), and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), as well as various other state government agencies. There were 124 retailers and 57 manufacturers participating in the program as well.  Running from 2000 until 2001, the program received wide publicity and 1,287 individuals were reported to have upgraded to EPA certified models. During the campaign over 2,250 individuals called the information hotline and the program website received over 200,000 hits. 

Preceding the Libby, Montana changeout, this program could have benefited from some of the improvements implemented in Libby.  Although the overall number of upgraded stoves was relatively small compared to the size of the region, the campaign was primarily focused on education and outreach, and in that regard it can be used as a model for future campaigns. The most changeouts occurred in the 37 counties where the local governments offered some matching funds in order to address air and water quality issues. Lessons from this program include; 1) higher funds make for much greater participation, 2) a compelling external reason for a changeout, e.g. air or water quality improvements in the local area is helpful, 3) changeouts may be most effective on a local scale.


Outdoor Wood Boilers
Although outdoor wood boiler (OWB) or hydronic heater replacement programs face particular challenges, changeout programs focusing on outdoor wood boilers are likely to be more common in coming years. Often those who purchase these whole home heating units are interested in the affordability of the fuel and the independence associated with these appliances. These units can cost anything from a couple thousand dollars to over ten thousand, and given that owners have already assumed a significant financial investment, convincing them that a replacement is needed is often difficult. For this reason, incentive programs seeking to replace old OWBs with cleaner units must be able to offer a significant incentive to consumers. The EPA has a voluntary certification program with certain hydronic heating units certified as ‘Phase II’ appliances, which can be allowed as replacement appliances in some areas. However, even these units are unsuitable in some densely populated areas, or areas with air quality issues. In these locations, an alternate heating source (such as a high end pellet boiler) should be eligible as a replacement.

The Vermont OWB Changeout Program offers an example of how policy makers were able to stretch their limited funds by focusing on the OWBs determined to be the greatest threat to human health. The governmental interest in the OWB changeout is to assist in the mandatory retirement of non-EPA OWBs in certain locations by the end of 2012.

To help households meet this mandatory retirement, the Vermont Air Pollution Control Division created a rebate voucher program targeting the biggest air quality threats by focusing the greatest financial incentive of $6000 on eligible OWBs that have “resulted in valid complaints regarding emissions”. The other primary target of this program was OWBs “located within 200 feet of a residence, school, or health care facility not served by the OWB” Funds became available for this second phase after the first phase ended in May, 2011, and vouchers were reduced to $5,000. The final facet of this program was a $1,000 voucher to match manufacturer rebates, which begins a month after the first program. By staggering the funds in this manner, the state was able to focus on what they have identified as the worst offenders, so that even if the program runs out of money or faces unforeseen difficulties, they will have already succeeded in a large part.

The Fairbanks North Star Borough, Alaska has a combined wood stove and outdoor boiler changeout program that is addressing the Borough’s air quality issues by providing both a $1,500 municipal tax credit and $1,000 cash to replace old wood stoves or the tax credit and $6,000 cash for replacing non EPA phase II qualified outdoor wood boilers.

Table 9: State Changeout Programs Policy Considerations

Changeout programs are an essential policy device to address air quality in non-attainment areas, while avoiding outright bans that could potentially deny a source of heat to vulnerable populations. They also face the unique challenge of convincing an owner that a functional appliance should be replaced at some level of cost. Because of this, most changeout programs must offer a significant financial incentive. This amount of money is generally the most compelling factor a changeout program can offer, followed by the messaging associated with air quality mitigation and human health.

Any changeout program must invest significant time and resources into educational and outreach components of the campaign if they hope to maximize air quality improvements. Modern, EPA certified wood stoves that emit low levels of particulates in the lab can burn much dirtier in households if clean burning practices are not employed. Even in communities where wood burning has a long tradition, a surprising number of households do not practice basic clean burning techniques such as only burning well seasoned (under 20% moisture content) wood.

“Messaging is much more difficult than it appears. The in-depth analysis of the Libby Changeout can be very helpful with this.”

-John Crouch, HPBA

An effective amount of time is often a crucial factor for changeout programs, especially those seeking to target lower-income households that may not have access to all of the media outlets being used to promote the campaign, and instead are more effectively reached by word of mouth. Many changeout programs have to overcome a time barrier between the first-adopters and those who wait to determine if the program was too good to be true. In shorter term programs, if this gap-time falls towards the end of the program time-frame, a large segment of interested stove owners miss their opportunity.


The second major challenge incentive programs face is determining the correct percentage of the total cost of a new heating unit to cover . If the percentage is too high, the program will run out of funds way before it runs out of applicants, but if the percentage is too low, it will not garner enough interest for the funds to be utilized. Ideally, a program would run a pilot program to gauge the optimal amount to incentivize middle-income households, and then run a full program the following year. The very low-income households will almost always require 80-100% of the total cost to be covered, as there is little to no disposable income. A small level of payment is often necessary to encourage buy-in, but in some cases the administrative cost of collecting this sum may not outweigh the benefits of increased low-income household buy-in.

Changeout programs also greatly benefit from local coordinators and advocates. For instance, in Eastern Arizona, the grant to the American Lung Association included staffing to organize the program.  Libby depended on full time local coordinator for two years, who made sure the program only removed stoves that had really been used, and that the new stoves were safely installed. While this represents additional cost, it can greatly increase the efficacy of a program.

A key issue to consider for an area requiring significant changeouts, such as a federal air quality non-attainment area, is the value of prohibiting the use of old stoves after a certain date.  This involves enforcement and should not be undertaken lightly, but it does potentially lower the required incentive amount. Conversely, if the local community has no restrictions on wood stove usage, such as burn-bans or stringent building codes, old stoves will be more expensive to eradicate from the community. Communities faced with clean air deadlines, or those that don’t wish to wait for ‘real estate transfer changeouts’ to slowly roll over the inventory of old stoves, should consider this trade off;  the value of a ‘date certain’ prohibition on usage, vs. the need for higher changeout incentives.

Renewable Portfolio Standards
Renewable portfolio standards (RPSs) set requirements for the amount of renewable energy or renewable energy credits that utility companies must use by a specific deadline. Though there is not yet a national standard, at least 38 states have RPSs or renewable energy goals. This commonly takes the form of requiring utility companies to meet a standard, such as 20% of their delivered power by the year 2025 or 2030, through the use of a variety of renewable energy technologies. Many states focus their RPSs on the electricity sector and have varying goals set for different forms of utility companies, breaking them down by Investor Owned Utilities, Municipal Utilities, Electric Cooperatives and Retail Suppliers.

Some states also have "carve outs" requiring a specific form of clean technology to be used for a percentage of the total renewable technology. For example, a number of states have a solar carve out, which requires that a certain portion of the electricity delivered by utilities is derived from solar photovoltaics. Additionally, a number of states have provisions for customer-sited renewable use, requiring that a portion of the renewable energy generated comes from customers. For example, Arizona and Colorado require that part of the required renewable energy is derived from distributed resources and that half of this comes from residential/customer-site applications. These programs serve as good examples of how residential renewable energy can contribute to state-wide goals.

Policy Considerations
Although states could benefit from applying the contribution of biomass stoves as a source of renewable energy, so far none of the eligible residential technologies include wood or pellet stoves. The argument commonly made against including wood/pellet stoves is that it is too difficult to determine the precise amount of electricity displaced by the appliances producing thermal energy. However, some state programs do include solar thermal, such as New Hampshire, New York and Ohio, which presents the same challenge in tracking electricity displacement as wood and pellet stoves. One possible way to gauge electricity in a home is to do a ‘before and after’ energy audit, but this can be costly. This cost could be addressed by partnering with non-profits, many of which already work to offer energy audits to households in need. Although existing RPSs don't include residential heat from biomass stoves and boilers, it would be a simple policy fix to include them in the definition of eligible energy sources.  Including residential biomass would incentivize an important renewable energy as well as helping states meet their renewable energy goals. 

Green Building Projects
Green building projects (also labeled as incentives or programs) are a type of government initiative focused on environmentally sound building practices. Undertaken at the state and local level, these projects generally reward the use of environmentally sound building practices through monetary incentives, a streamlining of the review and construction process or a combination of the two methods. They are usually based on one of a number of recognized third party ratings systems that award ‘points’ under a variety of criteria such as undertaking energy efficiency measures, using renewable energy, recycling building materials, etc.

Specific program types include tax credits, abatements and rebates as well as utility rebates and loan guarantees. Non-monetary incentives are generally focused on expediting permit and building processes as well as fee refunds or reductions. For examples of these types of regional programs see the following table.

Table 10: Green Building Incentive Programs

The most well-known and accepted ratings system, upon which qualification for these incentives most often relies, is the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification program. This widely respected ratings system was developed by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC), a Washington DC based non-profit dedicated to ‘regenerating and sustaining the health and vitality of all life by emphasizing construction practices that are environmentally and socially responsible and promote a healthier environment.’ Other recognized certification systems exist throughout the country including;
 

The LEED certification program is a point-based verification system designed to ensure, “energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, and stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their impacts.” Guidelines provided by the USGBC in eight categories cover a wide variety of building practices including everything from materials used, to the location of the structure. A maximum of 136 points is available, with at least 45 required to earn a label as ‘certified’- the lowest possible accreditation. The more points earned, the more prestigious the labeling; with Silver requiring at least 60 points, Gold 75 and Platinum 90.

Biomass heating systems are only included in the ratings system under the indoor environmental quality (IEQ) section. To earn IEQ credit a structure must receive at least 6 points. Up to 2 points can be received for installing a certified combustion appliance with a back-draft potential test (wood stove) or power/direct-venting (pellet stove), which is considered ‘best practice.’ However, a household installing no wood-burning device automatically gains 2 points. This means that a homeowner would experience zero net gain from the LEED ranking system despite investing time and money in a clean energy heating system. 

Policy Considerations
The equal point system for approved biomass stoves verses no stove installation shows a narrow-minded view of carbon reducing technologies on the part of the LEED program. Despite the fact that about 40% of the energy used in an average home goes toward space heating, LEED chooses to focus its incentives on high-dollar systems displacing grid electricity use.  Although this is a worthwhile endeavor, it ignores the more cost-effective solutions to offsetting the carbon footprint of thermal energy.  Biomass heating should also be considered under the Energy and Atmosphere Section of the certification guidelines for its potential to serve as a highly efficient source of renewable energy in the home.

Weatherization Assistance Programs
The Department of Energy (DOE) provides funding for weatherization assistance programs (WAP) in every state, U.S territories and Native American Tribes. Over the course of the last thirty three years, this program has provided weatherization services to 6.4 million low-income households through collaboration with local community agencies and non-profits. The program can also provide a relatively easy way for states to help low-income families better use wood heat. In 1988, the DOE issued guidance saying that wood stoves were an approved weatherization assistance measure and states could include them in their programs. In 2002 the DOE further addressed wood stoves by adding guidance that states should have procedures in place to identify potentially dangerous creosote build-up in chimneys and wood stove flues.

Most state programs include the repair and/or replacement of wood stoves, though some states such as New Mexico limit repairs and replacement to homes where a wood stove is the primary source of heat. California allows replacement only if the existing unit is a safety hazard, or if the absence of the unit would be harmful.  Other states allow replacement if it is recommended by the energy auditor.


Policy Considerations
Although this program is very extensive, the framework for wood stoves could do much more to recognize the role of wood heat as a cost-effective source of renewable energy and as a way to reduce reliance upon fossil fuel heating assistance. Just like energy efficiency measures, wood heating can provide long-term savings in energy costs. This is because wood heat allows homeowners to procure their own fuel in an inexpensive manner, which is especially important in the event that assistance funds are cut back. In this manner, programs should allow necessary repair of wood and pellet stoves, as well as the replacement of the stove if it is beyond repair.

In many cases, eligible homeowners may now know that their wood stoves can be repaired or replaced. As programs consult with local organizations and agencies, it would be beneficial to overall program success if officials partnered with the hearth industry and local retailers. Industry groups can help to raise awareness of the program and provide expertise to auditors and weatherization technicians.

1 Gochoe S., Everette V., Haynes R.. Case Studies on the Effectiveness of State Financial Incentives for Renewable Energy. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. September 2002. Pg. vii
2Kubert C, Sinclair M. Distributed Renewable Energy Finance and Policy Toolkit. Clean Energy States Alliance. December 2009. pg. 7
3Kubert C, Sinclair M. Distributed Renewable Energy Finance and Policy Toolkit. Clean Energy States Alliance. December 2009. Pg 7
4 Gochoe S., Everette V., Haynes R.. Case Studies on the Effectiveness of State Financial Incentives for Renewable Energy. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. September 2002. Pg. viii
5 Gochoe S., Everette V., Haynes R.. Case Studies on the Effectiveness of State Financial Incentives for Renewable Energy. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. September 2002. Pg. 3
6 Sarzynski, A. The Impact of Solar incentive Programs in Ten States. George Washington Institute of Public Policy. November 2009. Pg. 6
7 Kubert C, Sinclair M. Distributed Renewable Energy Finance and Policy Toolkit. Clean Energy States Alliance. December 2009. Pg 8
8 Kubert C, Sinclair M. Distributed Renewable Energy Finance and Policy Toolkit. Clean Energy States Alliance. December 2009. Pg 9
9 Gochoe S., Everette V., Haynes R.. Case Studies on the Effectiveness of State Financial Incentives for Renewable Energy. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. September 2002. Pg. viii
10 Gochoe S., Everette V., Haynes R.. Case Studies on the Effectiveness of State Financial Incentives for Renewable Energy. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. September 2002. Pg. 3
11 Kubert C, Sinclair M. Distributed Renewable Energy Finance and Policy Toolkit. Clean Energy States Alliance. December 2009. Pg 9
12 Gochoe S., Everette V., Haynes R.. Case Studies on the Effectiveness of State Financial Incentives for Renewable Energy. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. September 2002. Pg. vii
13 The Alaska Home Energy Rebate Program technically does allow wood stoves, but it is very rarely recommended by the energy auditing software, and has likely only been used for three or four units since the program’s inception.http://www.dsireusa.org/incentives/index.cfm?EE=1&RE=1&SPV=0&ST=0§or=Residential&implementingsector=S&searchtype=Rebate&technology=Photovoltaics&sh=1
14 Gochoe S., Everette V., Haynes R.. Case Studies on the Effectiveness of State Financial Incentives for Renewable Energy. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. September 2002. Pg. vi.
15 Gochoe S., Everette V., Haynes R.. Case Studies on the Effectiveness of State Financial Incentives for Renewable Energy. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. September 2002. Pg. vi.
16 Sarzynski, A. The Impact of Solar incentive Programs in Ten States. George Washington Institute of Public Policy. November 2009. Pg. 5-6
17 Kubert C, Sinclair M. Distributed Renewable Energy Finance and Policy Toolkit. Clean Energy States Alliance. December 2009. Pg 26
18 Kubert C, Sinclair M. Distributed Renewable Energy Finance and Policy Toolkit. Clean Energy States Alliance. December 2009. Pg 26
19 Kubert C, Sinclair M. Distributed Renewable Energy Finance and Policy Toolkit. Clean Energy States Alliance. December 2009. Pg 26
20 Gochoe S., Everette V., Haynes R.. Case Studies on the Effectiveness of State Financial Incentives for Renewable Energy. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. September 2002. Pg. vi-vii
21 Tessa Stevens, Dept. of Environmental Quality-Air Quality Division email message to author, October 2010
22 EIA Residential Energy Consumption Survey,Fuels Used and End Uses in U.S. Homes, By Owner/Renter 2009. 2009
23 EIA Residential Energy Consumption Survey,Fuels Used and End Uses in U.S. Homes, By Owner/Renter 2009. 2009
24 Gochoe S., Everette V., Haynes R.. Case Studies on the Effectiveness of State Financial Incentives for Renewable Energy. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. September 2002. Pg. viii
25 Gochoe S., Everette V., Haynes R.. Case Studies on the Effectiveness of State Financial Incentives for Renewable Energy. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. September 2002. Pg. viii
26 Kubert C, Sinclair M. Distributed Renewable Energy Finance and Policy Toolkit. Clean Energy States Alliance. December 2009
27 Kubert C, Sinclair M. Distributed Renewable Energy Finance and Policy Toolkit. Clean Energy States Alliance. December 2009. Pg. 14
28 Kubert C, Sinclair M. Distributed Renewable Energy Finance and Policy Toolkit. Clean Energy States Alliance. December 2009. Pg 15
29 Gochoe S., Everette V., Haynes R.. Case Studies on the Effectiveness of State Financial Incentives for Renewable Energy. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. September 2002. Pg. ix
30 Guardardo E. Connecticut Housing and Investment Fund. Personal Conversation with the Author. April 2011
31 Gochoe S., Everette V., Haynes R.. Case Studies on the Effectiveness of State Financial Incentives for Renewable Energy. National Renewable Energy Laboratory. September 2002. Pg. ix
32 Bruce Hauschild, P.E.. Conversation with the Author. April 2011
33 Crouch J. HPBA. Personal Correspondence with the Author. June 2011.
34 Ward, Tony, et al. Lessons learned from a woodstove changeout on the Nez Perce Reservation. The Science of the Total Environment. January, 2011; 409(4):664-70.
35 HPBA Wood Stove Changeout Program Website. < http://woodstovechangeout.org/index.php
36 Crouch. J. Upgrading Woodstoves in a Small Town as a Primary Strategy Towards Visibility Improvement. Air and Waste Management Association. June 1991. Pg 3
37 Hooper, Kathi. Woodstove Changeout Program: Libby Montana. Department of Environmental Health, Libby Montana. <http://www.epa.gov/burnwise/workshop2011/Libby-WoodStoveChangeout-Hooper.pdf pg. 8
38 Ibid. pg. 15
39 Preliminary Report: Clearing the Smoke: The Woodstove Changeout in Libby, Montana. Hearth Patio & Barbeque Association. Arlington, VA <http://woodstovechangeout.org/fileadmin/PDF/Libby_Report-Final.pdf pg. 10
40 Ibid. pg. 20
41 Tony J. Ward, et al. A Community Woodstove Changeout and Impact on Ambient Concentrations of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons and Phenolics. Center for Environmental Health Sciences, The University of Montana, 2009. <http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2735050/ pg. 7
42 Preliminary Report: Clearing the Smoke: The Woodstove Changeout in Libby, Montana. Pg 18
43 Crouch J. HPBA. Personal Correspondence with the Author. June 2011.
44 Ibid. pg. 22
45“ Great Lakes States: Promising First Steps.” <http://woodstovechangeout.org/index.php?id=25
46 EPA Burn Wise Program Website. Last updated April 4, 2011 <http://www.epa.gov/burnwise/participation.html#hydronic
47 10 V.S.A. 584 (g) The Vermont Statutes Online
48 10 V.S.A. 584 (g) The Vermont Statutes Online
49 Proposed legislation in Rhode Island would phase out older OWBs by requiring their removal before selling or renting the property. H5783 Substitute A, introduced by Pre. Flaherty, McNamara and Bennet on March 3, 2011.
50 Pew Center on Global Climate Change. Renewable and Alternative Energy Portfolio Standards. 2011. <www.pewclimate.org
51 United States Green Building Council. <www.usgbc.org
52 United States Green Building Council. LEED for Homes Rating System. Jan 2008 pg. iv
53 Ibid. pg 86-88
54 Energy Information Administration. Residential Energy Consumption Survey. 2009
55 U.S. Department of Energy. Weatherization Assistance Program. 56U.S. Department of Energy. MEMORANDUM, Approval to Include Wood Stoves As A Weatherization Assistance Program Material. 1988. <http://www.waptac.org/data/files/website_docs/government/guidance/woodstove.pdf
57 U.S. Department of Energy. Interim Health and Safety Guidance. Weatherization Assistance Program.  July 2002. < http://www.waptac.org/data/files/website_docs/government/guidance/2002/wpn%2002-5.pdf
58 U.S. Department of Energy. U.S. Department of Energy., CSD LIHEAP/DOE Weatherization Programs Health and Safety Appliance Replacement Policy. 2009

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