In 2012 the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is expected to issue
revisions to its New Source Performance Standards (NSPS), the program that
governs emissions for wood burning appliances.
Among other things, it is expected that the new NSPS will explicitly include wood pellet
stoves and that it will require pellet appliance certification tests and
operation with industry-certified pellets.
EPA has worked with the Pellet Fuels Institute (PFI) to encourage development
of a pellet fuel certification program and it is expected that the EPA will
cite this program specifically in the new NSPS. For the purposes of the NSPS, pellets that are tested through the PFI Standards Program would be assured to be qualified to a specified grade and can be properly matched to the appliances that are permitted to burn them.
Manufacturers of PFI graded pellet fuels will be allowed to place labels on their packaging,
thereby assuring consumers and retailers that the pellets in fact meet the new
Once the new NSPS is finalized, it is expected that most consumers and retailers will demand
pellets that meet the standards and are labeled as such.
How does PLIB fit in?
The biggest difference between the PFI’s previous quality standards program and the current
program is that the current program includes provisions requiring third party
inspections, sampling, testing and overall program oversight.
The American Lumber Standards Committee (ALSC) has agreed to serve as the program’s accreditation body. PLIB has applied to become an ALSC-approved inspection agency for the
purposes of this program. PLIB expects to become approved in early January
Once approved PLIB can serve as the third-party inspection agency and administrator of the PFI
labeling program for any wood pellet manufacturer wishing to comply. For details about the PFI program, click here (goes to
For information about subscribing to PLIB’s wood pellet inspection
program, please contact us at 253-835-3344.