23 April 2021

Clean Air Rotorua has supported the community in the Rotorua Airshed to access heating and insulation upgrades as well as burner removals for over a decade. However, access to Hot swap loans, low-income heating grants and subsidised burner removals ends next week on 30 April 2021.

Toi Moana Bay of Plenty Regional Council has been administering this scheme since 2010 and in this time, over 1100 old fires have been removed under the Rotorua Bylaw, over 620 owners have received free replacement heating, 1065 zero emission heaters and 5200 compliant wood burners have been installed.

However, there are still illegal burning appliances in homes across Rotorua and Regional Council is urgently calling for those property owners to take action before the end of this month, while assistance is still available.

Senior Regulatory Project Officer, Marion Henton, says the programme is all about the health of the Rotorua community and environment.

“By improving air quality, we help to protect our whānau. Smoky indoor fires hurt those who are most vulnerable in our community, so it’s really important to be mindful of how we heat our homes this winter,” Marion said.

“Know the rules and look after our environment this winter.”

The biggest source of the Rotorua urban air pollution is smoke from solid fuel burners for home heating. The community has been actively replacing their old fires with cleaner technology since 2010 and this has made a difference to the wintertime air quality. It is critical to not undermine the community’s incredible effort - only use compliant burners, operate fires carefully and only use dry firewood to reduce smoke.

For tips on lighting and burning fires safely and how to make the most of your firewood, please view our factsheet.

Protect the air we breathe by calling the 24/7 Pollution Hotline on 0800 884 833 if you find, see or smell pollution including smoky fires.

For more information on the heating and insulation schemes, or to book a home assessment, please visit https://cleanairrotorua.co.nz/hot-swap-ends-30-april-2021/. Alternatively, please call Regional Council on 0800 884 880.

ENDS

For further media information, please contact media@boprc.govt.nz

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