Roanoke, VA - If you rely on a wood stove for heat , you are going to want to hear about new emissions standards the EPA is working on.
Those standards haven't changed in more than 25 years.
Across the United States, more than 12 million people rely on wood as their primary form of heat.
Pat Jones used to use a wood stove full time and still does occasionally. He also sells them at Dixie Products, in Roanoke, and sees big changes on the horizon.
The changes the EPA is looking at would require lower emissions from wood stoves , dropping at least 80% by the year 2020.
"They just gotta figure out how to burn up all the gases up and that's going to be through technology of... the by products that are burning they are going to have to burn it all up inside the stove," said Jones.
It's technology that is not available yet.
Some suspect that change alone will end up causing more change.
"Unfortunately the technology is going to get to be expensive," said Jones.
Beyond that, the government insists any change won't affect the current wood stove owners.
"Insurance companies are going to disallow them. Come in your house and say, "That's not a certified stove and we're not going to cover your house if you keep it in it," said Jones.
The EPA continues public hearings on these proposed changes.
Stoves not affected include stoves that use other fuels than wood as well as "pellet stoves" which primarily burn biomass.
The EPA says wood burning stoves cause 13% of the country's current pollution output.