Print Friendly and PDF
wood stove alaska epa toxics
Big Stock Photo

Alaska and 9 other states threaten to sue EPA over wood-burning stove standards

1 min read

Yereth Rosen of the Alaska Beacon writes that Alaska and nine other states have notified the Environmental Protection Agency they intend to sue if new standards for certification of wood-burning stoves are not issued soon.

In a nutshell:

The EPA's 2015 standards are considered flawed and inadequately administered, allowing substandard devices to be certified and increasing pollution while deceiving consumers. The notice gives the agency 60 days to produce revised standards and a better process for testing and certifying wood-stove units. The chief concern in Alaska is fine-particulate pollution in the Fairbanks area, which poses health hazards in winter due to weather conditions that trap cold air and pollutants.

Key quote:

“We must defend the Greater Fairbanks area from potentially expensive, restrictive federal controls on businesses that are not the source of the problem like coffee roasters, restaurants, and utilities,” Alaska Attorney General Treg Taylor said in a statement released last week by the Department of Law.

The big picture:

Fine-particulate pollution caused by wood stove smoke poses significant health dangers to individuals exposed to it. These tiny particles, known as PM2.5, can penetrate deep into the respiratory system, leading to various respiratory and cardiovascular problems. Prolonged exposure to wood smoke can exacerbate respiratory conditions such as asthma and bronchitis, increase the risk of heart attacks and strokes, and contribute to overall poor air quality. Efforts to reduce fine-particulate pollution from wood-burning stoves are crucial for safeguarding public health and promoting cleaner air.

For more details, read the Alaska Beacon article.

For additional context, read Brian Bienkowski's excellent article for EHN about a study that found fine particulate matter exposure was linked to increased psychiatric-related emergency room visits for kids.

About the author(s):

EHN Staff

Articles written and posted by staff at Environmental Health News

Become a donor
Today's top news
From our newsroom

Everyone is likely overexposed to BPA

If you're using plastic, you're likely above acceptable health safety levels.

Opinion: The global food system is failing small-scale farmers — here’s how to fix it

Maybe we don’t need Jamaican coffee in the middle of US winter.

LISTEN: Bruce Lanphear on how we’re failing to protect people from pesticides

Lanphear recently resigned as the co-chair of the Health Canada scientific advisory committee on pest control products.

How does cannabis impact developing brains?

As states increasingly legalize or decriminalize marijuana, some experts warn that early exposure may be linked to mental health problems later in life.

Agents of Change in Environmental Justice program accepting applications

Do you find that public voices in science are lacking diversity and want to help create change? We want to hear from you.