Outdoor Air Quality

Important News for Smoke Reduction Zone Residents

As of October 1, 2015, it is illegal to own or operate an uncertified wood stove in the Smoke Reduction Zone. If you live in this zone, find out more about the rule by visiting the Wood Stove Rule page. Get more information on www.airsafepiercecounty.org.


Woodstove Replacement Program Update

Feb. 2016 —The Wood Stove Replacement Program is currently out of funding and on hold.

The Puget Sound Clean Air Agency is seeking additional funding from the Washington State Legislature.

While they cannot guarantee they will receive new grant funding, we still encourage you to still sign up now. That way you can be contacted if the program is awarded new funding.

This program was developed to help residents within the targeted area of Pierce County, known as the Smoke Reduction Zone, replace their uncertified wood-burning devices with cleaner heating options.

For more information on the Smoke Reduction Program, please visit http://airsafepiercecounty.org/wood-stove-program or contact the Outdoor Air Program at Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department at (253) 798-4540 or email woodsmoke@tpchd.org.

Overview – The Wood Stove Rule

  • This Rule applies only to uncertified wood burning stoves in the Tacoma-Pierce County Smoke Reduction Zone.
  • The Rule requires you to remove, or render inoperable, any uncertified wood stove (most are more than 25 years old) by September 30, 2015.
  • This rule was adopted by the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency Board of Directors in response to the WA state law providing Puget Sound Clean Air Agency authority to ban all uncertified wood burning stoves within the Tacoma-Pierce County Smoke Reduction Zone.
  • The only exception to the Rule is if you have an approved exemption for having no other adequate source of heat. This exemption has very specific requirements and limitations. If you think you may qualify, please download the application.
  • This rule does not affect certified wood stoves (usually newer than 25 years old).
  • For more information, please visit: www.airsafepiercecounty.org

Burn Bans

Burn ban enforcement has significantly increased in the Smoke Reduction Zone. Wood burning during a ban may result in a fine of up to $1,000. Increased enforcement and night patrols will increase the likelihood of violators receiving substantial fines this season.

To avoid fines, we suggest you burn cleanly and sign up for email or text notifications sent out by the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency. Also, if burning wood is your only adequate source of heat, you will need to apply for the right to burn during a ban from the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency.

These two efforts are intended to help bring our area into compliance with federal air quality standards. While wood burning is not being banned, it does need to be done responsibly for the sake of our community’s health.

If you have any questions, please contact the Outdoor Air Program at (253) 798-4540.