2012 April 3: RI: Rhode Island House Bill 7633 – Outdoor wood-fired hydronic heaters. Hearing on April 12
There is a bill pending in the House of Representatives that attempts to regulate Outdoor Wood Boilers. OWBS.
Although the bill appears better than previous bills it is still flawed. This indicates that they want this issue to go through this time, which means if we give up now then these out of State manufactures will use peoples own passiveness against them and while they sit there and not speak up for themselves or for what’s right, their lobbyists will make sure that the bill favors them and their customers no matter who it hurts!
There are 2 things the bill is missing 1) A moratorium. This will not allow any OWB to be installed until a set time. If this bill does not go through (it hasn’t for 5 years in a row) then at least now one will be putting one in next door to you. The EPA is in the process of revamping their New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) which will include OWB’s. This in essence will create a Phase III . The most recent state to address OWB’s is Oregon which put a moratorium in place until the EPA finishes its NSPS. Why won’t RI do the same? Instead they have actually going backwards and are attempting to allow the older even more polluting Phase 1’s.
2) Season restrictions – There are none in the bill at all. Which translates into these people can run these things year round just to heat their hot water in the summer and there is not a thing anyone can do about it! The argument is that it will affect the farmers who use them year round. The answer is to exempt the farmers, and shut the residential units down on April 1st until it’s at least 50° or less for 5 consecutive days.
The bill does contain nuisance provisions which are essential but are very confusing and the end result will end up being that once a complaint is filed the answer given will be “they are in compliance” The definition of Nuisance in the bill states if it’s a violation of DEM regulation 48. All REG 48 states is that the unit must be a Phase II and they must be given a pamphlet. So if the OWB owner has a phase II or a unit installed prior to the date Reg 48 went into effect they are in compliance and nothing will be done. The bill goes on and on about all the things that could happen but only if the towns enact an ordinance and include nuisance provisions in it. It states the Dem director has the power to shut down a unit , but she already has it now and refuses to do it. A copy of the bill is here,
the nuisance provisions are very very confusing which is exactly what they are meant to do.
So as you can see the bill would be beneficial if it had A moratorium, season restrictions/limits and stronger, better, less confusing language on the nuisance provisions.
Just one last time can everyone take a minute to either leave their representative a voicemail; I can get you their contact info and some pointers. Or send an email to the following just call or e-mail me and I can take a minute to help you say what you want if you’re not sure.
It needs to be sent to the following address
TO: House Committee on Environment and Natural Resources
In the subject line you can put House Bill No. 7633 – Outdoor wood-fired hydronic heaters
rep-bennett , rep-blazejewski , rep-chippendale , rep-cimini , rep-dickinson , rep-ehrhardt , rep-handy , rep-mcnamara , rep-tanzi , rep-tomasso , rep-walsh , rep-flaherty, rep-ruggiero,
please bcc, rifca08 ,
Lastly there will be a hearing on April 12, Although a phone call is worth a lot and an email is worth twice as much, someone showing up and saying their piece at a hearing holds the most weight and would be a big help. If anyone wants to go let me know it’s around 4:30ish or later on Thursday the 12th.