DEC Proposed Regulations - to address Fine Particulate Matter (PM2.5) within the Fairbanks North Star Borough

Existing wood stoves stay, without increased regulation. There were 125 days for the public to comment on these proposed regulations. The Department held three open houses in Fairbanks and one in North Pole to answer questions about these proposed regulations. Below is a link to the timeline for the proposed regulations and the State Implementation Plan or SIP. A SIP is a plan developed at the state level that explains how the state will comply with air quality standards according to the Federal Clean Air Act. A SIP must be submitted by the state government of any state with areas that are designated in nonattainment of Federal air quality standards.

Important Points

  • Woodstoves Stay
  • Emissions standards would apply only to NEW wood stove and boiler purchases
  • Proposal adds flexibility to addressing wood smoke on days with unhealthy air quality
  • 60-80% of the PM2.5 pollution comes from solid fuel home heating


Comment Period has closed

The formal comment period for the PM2.5 regulations is now closed.  The Department is currently working to develop a response to comments document that will be posted here when completed.  Due to the number of comments, the Department does not expect to have the response to comments completed until after June 2014. The department will update the timing of the release as work progresses.

Proposed Updates to 18 AAC 50

18 AAC 50.065(f) is being amended to restrict wintertime outdoor open burning in the FNSB PM-2.5 nonattainment area.

18 AAC 50.075(b) is being amended to give the department the flexibility to allow operation of wood-fired heating devices in areas where the department has declared an air quality episode under 18 AAC 50.245. 

18 AAC 50 is being amended by adding a new section (18 AAC 50.076) to clarify the types of solid fuels that can be burned in heating devices operating within the FNSB PM-2.5 nonattainment area.

18 AAC 50 is being amended, by adding a new section (18 AAC 50.077) to establish particulate matter emissions limitations for new wood-fired heating devices, including outdoor hydronic heaters and woodstoves, being manufactured, sold or installed within the FNSB PM-2.5 nonattainment area.

18 AAC 50.245(a) Table 6 is being amended to establish PM-2.5 concentrations that will trigger an air quality alert, air quality warning and air quality emergency episode. 

18 AAC 50.245(a), (b) and (c) are being amended to give local air quality control programs, authorized by the department, the authority to declare air quality episodes and advisories and to take immediate action. 

18 AAC 50.990 is being amended to modify the definition of a wood-fired heating device and to add the definitions for “wood heater/wood stove”, “clean wood”, “hydronic heater”, and “solid fuel-fired heating device”.

See: Proposed Regulation Documentation