New ordinance could prohibit use of outdoor wood burners

NORWICH – In a recent meeting of the Public Works and Public Safety Committee and again at a meeting of the Finance and Personnel Committe, the possibility of prohibiting outdoor solid fuel burning furnaces was discussed.

According to City Code Enforcement Officer Jason Lawrence, only one residence within the city limits has an outdoor wood burner. Many people believe that outdoor wood burners (OWBs) cause more health problems than traditional furnaces and indoor wood stoves and have the potential to detract from the quality of life.

“With OWB chimneys not high enough to carry the smoke past the heights of surrounding homes and local terrain, wood smoke, soot, and toxins may enter homes and yards of owners and neighbors who are situated close to OWBs,” states a 2005 report from former Attorney General Eliot Spitzer’s office.

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