RUMFORD — The American Lung Association of the Northeast launched a program Thursday to distribute $41,000 in vouchers to residents who swap their old wood stoves for cleaner-burning wood, pellet or gas stoves.

Coordinator Michelle Edwards said the program covers Andover, Byron, Canton, Carthage, Dixfield, Hanover, Mexico, Peru, Roxbury and Rumford.

Retailers participating in the program are Don’s Chimney Care and Stove Shop in Livermore, and Northern Lights Hearth and Sports in Farmington.

“Homeowners who live in the project area can apply for a voucher, whether in store or online, to trade in their non-EPA-certified wood stove,” Edwards said. “The vouchers will be granted for $1,000 so people can replace their stove with a new EPA-certified wood stove, pellet stove or gas stove.”

Jeff Seyler, president and CEO of the American Lung Association of the Northeast, said in a news release the vouchers will be offered on a first come, first served basis.

Edwards said once people receive their voucher, they have 30 days to enter into an agreement with a participating retailers.

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“The retailer will install the new stove, recycle the old stove and make it inoperable,” Edwards said.

Edwards said it’s the first such program the Lung Association is offering in Maine.

Seyler said in a news release that the program will “lower particle pollution emissions in the area and support local retail stove businesses who are working with the American Lung Association of the Northeast.”

For more information on the program, visit LungNE.org/woodstove, or call 1-800-548-8252.

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