Gas stoves are one type of upgrade to old wood stoves.

Gas stoves are one type of upgrade to old wood stoves.

Provincial funds support wood smoke reduction in Comox Valley

The Environment Ministry is providing the Comox Valley Regional District with $29,000 from its wood stove exchange program, which helps to replace old, smoky wood stoves with cleaner burning models.

Burning wood creates significant pollution by increasing particulate matter in the air. Also known as PM2.5, fine particulate matter can cause health problems.

The CVRD will allocate $15,500 to support rebates, $10,000 to support public outreach and events such as smart burning workshops, and $3,500 to support a co-ordinator to deliver the program.

The CVRD board revised its rebate program this year, eliminating the rebate for swapping an old wood stove with a new one.

“The wood stove exchange program is one element of addressing air quality improvements in the Comox Valley,” said Alana Mullaly, senior manager of sustainability and RGS Planning.

The board has resolved to create an air quality advisory committee, which will be established next year and begin work on an airshed protection plan for 2020/21.

The Comox Valley is among 15 B.C. communities to receive funding. The annual wood stove exchange program has helped replace more than 8,000 old stoves in B.C.

Visit bit.ly/35dk8Fk for information about the CVRD’s Wood Smoke Reduction Program.