[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Pawling 3-5-2014 by L.L. No. 1-2014. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Editor's Note: This local law was originally adopted as Ch. 157 but was renumbered to maintain the alphabetical organization of the Code.
Although outdoor furnaces may provide an economical alternative to conventional heating systems, concerns have been raised regarding the safety and environmental impacts of these heating devices, particularly the production of offensive odors and potential health effects of uncontrolled emissions. This chapter is intended to ensure that outdoor furnaces are utilized in a manner that does not create a nuisance and is not detrimental to health, safety and general welfare of the residents of the Town.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- AGRICULTURAL LAND
- The land and on-farm buildings, equipment, manure processing and handling facilities, and practices that contribute to the production, preparation and marketing of crops, livestock and livestock products as a commercial enterprise, including a commercial horse-boarding operation and timber processing. Such farm operation may consist of one or more parcels of owned or rented land, which parcels may be contiguous or noncontiguous to each other.
- CLEAN WOOD
- Wood that has not been painted, stained, or treated with any other coatings, glues or preservatives, including, but not limited to, chromated copper arsenate, creosote, alkaline copper quaternary, copper azole or pentachlorophenol.
- COMMENCE OPERATION
- The initial startup of the combustion chamber of a new outdoor wood-burning furnace after all piping and electrical connections between the new outdoor wood-burning furnace and the structure(s) it serves have been completed.
- COMMERCIAL-SIZE NEW OUTDOOR WOOD-BURNING FURNACE
- A new outdoor wood-burning furnace with a thermal output rating greater than 250,000 British thermal units per hour (Btu/h).
- ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
- The Town Building Inspector and any other person the Town Board may designate by resolution as an enforcement officer for purposes of this chapter.
- Any person who makes or produces a new outdoor wood-burning furnace that is ultimately operated in New York.
- All new outdoor wood-burning furnaces that must be modified by a single manufacturer and that are similar in all material and design respects.
- NEW OUTDOOR WOOD-BURNING FURNACE
- An outdoor wood-burning furnace that commences operation on or after the effective date of this chapter.
- OUTDOOR WOOD-BURNING FURNACE
- A fuel-burning device that is designed to burn wood or other fuels, is specified by the manufacturer for outdoor installation or installation in structures not normally occupied by humans, and is used to heat building space and/or water via the distribution, typically through pipes, of a gas or liquid (e.g., water or water/antifreeze mixture) heated in the device.
- Any individual, firm, association, corporation, partnership, trust, estate, legal representative, company, foundation or fund, charitable organization, or other entity owning or occupying real property within the Town.
- PREEXISTING OUTDOOR WOOD-BURNING FURNACE
- An outdoor wood-burning furnace that was purchased and installed prior to the effective date of this chapter.
- RESIDENTIAL-SIZE NEW OUTDOOR WOOD-BURNING FURNACE
- A new outdoor wood-burning furnace that has a thermal output rating of 250,000 Btu/h or less.
- TEST METHOD 28 OWHH
- EPA Test Method 28 OWHH for Measurement of Particulate Emissions and Heating Efficiency of Outdoor Wood-Fired Hydronic Heating Appliances, Attachment 2 of the EPA Outdoor Wood-fired Hydronic Heater Program Phase I Partnership Agreement dated March 16, 2007. (See Chapter III, § 200.9, Table 1, of the DEC Regulations.)
- THERMAL OUTPUT RATING
- The heat value in Btu/h that a manufacturer specifies a particular model of new outdoor wood boiler is capable of supplying at its design capacity.
No person shall operate an outdoor wood-burning furnace that does not meet the requirements set forth in this section:
Building permit. No person shall cause, allow or maintain the use of an outdoor wood-burning furnace within the Town of Pawling without first having obtained a permit from the Building Inspector. Application for permit shall be made to the Building Inspector on the forms provided. Owners of outdoor wood boilers in existence at the time this chapter went into effect must contact the Building Inspector to obtain a permit within one year of the effective date of this chapter.
Months of operation. Outdoor wood-burning furnaces are subject to a no-burn period between May 31 and September 1. Outdoor wood-burning furnaces may not be used or otherwise operated during that no-burn period.
Spark arrestor. All outdoor wood-burning furnaces must be equipped with a properly functioning spark arrestor as per manufacturer recommendations.
Manufacturer's specifications. All outdoor wood boilers must be in strict compliance with the manufacturer's specifications pertaining to construction, installation, use, operation, and maintenance. In the event of a conflict between the manufacturer's specifications and the requirements of this chapter, the more restrictive standard shall control.
Locations. Outdoor wood-burning furnaces shall be permitted only in R-1 or larger zoning districts as shown on the Town's Zoning Map, provided the parcel is at least one acre. Outdoor wood-burning furnaces are not allowed in the HA Hamlet Zoning District.
Minimum lot size. Outdoor wood-burning furnaces shall be permitted only on lots of one acre or more.
Prohibited fuels. No person shall burn any of the following items in an outdoor wood-burning furnace:
Yard waste, including lawn clippings;
Materials containing plastic;
Materials containing rubber;
Waste petroleum products;
Paints or paint thinners;
Household or laboratory chemicals;
Construction and demolition debris;
Oriented strand board;
Saltwater driftwood; or
No person shall cause or allow emissions of air contaminants from an outdoor wood-burning furnace to the outdoor atmosphere of a quantity, characteristic or duration which is injurious to human, plant or animal life or to property, or which unreasonably interferes with the comfortable enjoyment of life or property. This prohibition applies, but is not limited to, the following conditions:
The prohibition further applies to any particulate, fume, gas, mist, odor, smoke, vapor, toxic or deleterious emission, either alone or in combination with others, emitted from an outdoor wood-burning furnace that results in the conditions or circumstances listed in this subdivision notwithstanding the existence of specific air quality standards or emission limits.
Smoke plume. No person shall operate an outdoor wood-burning furnace in such a manner as to create a smoke plume with an opacity of 20% or greater (six-minute mean), as determined using EPA Reference Method 9 (or equivalent). (See Chapter III, § 200.9, Table 1, of the DEC Regulations.)
A person who operates an outdoor wood-burning furnace may only burn the following fuels in such furnace:
Seasoned clean wood;
Wood pellets made from clean wood;
Heating oil in compliance with Chapter III, Part 225, Subpart 225-1, of the DEC Regulations, LP gas or natural gas may be used as starter fuels for dual fuel-fired outdoor wood-burning furnaces;
Nonglossy, noncolored papers, including newspaper, may be used only to start an outdoor wood-burning furnace; and
Other fuels approved by the DEC per the certification requirements of Chapter III, Part 247, § 247.8, of the DEC Regulations.
Emission limits. In order for a residential-size new outdoor wood-burning furnace to be certified pursuant to Chapter III, Part 247, § 247.8, of the DEC Regulations, it must not emit particulate emissions at a rate greater than a weighted average of 0.32 pounds per million British thermal units heat output using the year-round weighting factors in Test Method 28 OWHH. (See Chapter III, § 200.9, Table 1, of the DEC Regulations.) The particulate emission rate for any test run with a burn rate less than or equal to 1.5 kilograms per hour must not exceed 15 grams per hour. The particulate emission rate for any test run with a burn rate greater than 1.5 kilograms per hour must not exceed 18 grams per hour.
Setback. A residential-size new outdoor wood-burning furnace shall not be located less than 100 feet from the nearest property boundary line and shall be permitted in the rear yard only.
Notwithstanding the above, a residential-size new outdoor wood-burning furnace installed on contiguous agricultural lands larger than five acres shall not be located less than 100 feet or more from the nearest residence not served by the outdoor wood-burning furnace.
Stack height. A residential-size new outdoor wood-burning furnace shall be equipped with a permanent stack extending a minimum of 18 feet above ground level. Notwithstanding the foregoing, if there is a roof structure within 150 feet of the residential-size new outdoor wood-burning furnace, the permanent stack must extend at least two feet above the peak of said roof structure.
A commercial-size new outdoor wood-burning furnace shall not be used in a solely residential application.
Emission limits. In order for a commercial-size new outdoor wood-burning furnace to be certified pursuant to Chapter III, Part 247, § 247.8 of the DEC Regulations, it must not emit particulate emissions at a rate greater than a weighted average of 0.32 pounds per million British thermal units heat output using the year-round weighting factors in Test Method 28 OWHH. (See Chapter III, § 200.9, Table 1, of the DEC Regulations.) Further, the particulate emission rate for any test run must not exceed 20 grams per hour.
Notwithstanding the above, a commercial-size new outdoor wood-burning furnace installed on contiguous agricultural lands larger than five acres must be sited 300 feet or more from the nearest residence not served by the outdoor wood boiler and 1,000 feet or more from a school.
Stack height. A commercial-size new outdoor wood-burning furnace shall be equipped with a permanent stack extending a minimum of 18 feet above ground level. Notwithstanding the foregoing, if there is a roof structure within 150 feet of the commercial-size new outdoor wood-burning furnace, the permanent stack must extend at least two feet above the peak of said roof structure.
A permit issued pursuant to this chapter may be suspended, as the Building Inspector may determine to be necessary, to protect the public health, safety and welfare of the residents of the Town of Pawling if any of the following conditions occurs:
Emissions from the outdoor wood-burning furnace exhibit greater than twenty-percent opacity (six-minute average), except for one continuous six-minute period per hour of not more than twenty-seven-percent opacity, which shall be determined as provided in 6 NYCRR 227-1.3(b);
Malodorous air contaminants from the outdoor wood-burning furnace are detectable outside the property of the person on whose land the outdoor furnace is located;
The emissions from the outdoor furnace interfere with the reasonable enjoyment of life or property;
The emissions from the outdoor furnace cause damage to vegetation or property; or
The emissions from the outdoor furnace are or may be harmful to human or animal health.
The suspended permit may be reinstated once the condition which resulted in suspension is remedied and reasonable assurances are given that such condition will not recur. Recurrence of a condition which has previously resulted in suspension of a permit shall be considered a violation of this chapter subject to the penalties provided in § 212-11 hereof.
Where the Zoning Board of Appeals finds that extraordinary and unnecessary hardship may result from strict compliance with this chapter, it may vary the regulations so that substantial justice may be done and the public interest secured, provided that such variations will not have the effect of nullifying the intent and purpose of this chapter or of jeopardizing the health, safety or welfare of the public. In varying any regulations, the Zoning Board of Appeals may impose such conditions and requirements as it deems reasonable and prudent. The Zoning Board of Appeals will hold a public hearing as part of its review. If the Zoning Board of Appeals grants the waiver, a permit shall be issued for the outdoor furnace. If the Zoning Board denies the waiver, the outdoor furnace must either be brought into compliance with this chapter or removed.
In no event may any variance be given with respect to the front-yard location of the outdoor wood-burning furnace.
If a preexisting outdoor wood-burning furnace had been installed prior to adoption of this chapter, a replacement outdoor wood-burning furnace may be replaced at the exact location on the property, subject to all of the provisions of this chapter.
Failure to comply with any of the provisions of this chapter shall be a violation and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punishable by a fine of not less than $500 or imprisonment for a period of not more than 10 days, or both, for the first offense. Any subsequent offense shall be punishable by a fine not less than $1,000 or imprisonment for a period of not more than 30 days, or both. In addition, any permit issued pursuant to this chapter shall be revoked upon conviction of a second offense, and the subject outdoor furnace shall not be eligible for another permit. Each day that a violation occurs shall constitute a separate offense. The owners of premises upon which prohibited acts occur shall be jointly and severally liable for violations of this chapter. Any fine imposed hereunder shall constitute a lien upon the real property where the outdoor furnace is located until paid.
Nothing contained herein shall authorize or allow burning which is prohibited by codes, laws, rules or regulations promulgated by the United States Environmental Protection Agency, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, and/or any other federal, state, regional or local agency. Outdoor furnaces, and any electrical, plumbing or other apparatus or device used in connection with an outdoor furnace, shall be installed, operated and maintained in conformity with the manufacturer's specifications and any and all local, state and federal codes, laws, rules and regulations. In case of conflict between any provisions of this chapter and any applicable federal, state or local ordinances, codes, laws, rules and regulations, the more restrictive or stringent provisions or requirements shall prevail.