Utrecht residents who want to remove or make unusable their fireplace or stove can apply for a subsidy. The municipality of Utrecht wrote this in an announcement of the subsidy scheme on Wednesday. The fourth largest city in the Netherlands hopes to be able to do something about air pollution with this.
The subsidy can be applied for from Tuesday to December 31, 2022. The municipality says it wants to offer the subsidy until 2025. A subsidy of up to 2,000 euros per household can be provided. Utrecht residents with a low income can receive up to 4,000 euros.
The scheme is also available for households that want to replace their fireplace or stove with a modern, less polluting stove. “We would prefer that the fire stays out more often, but if wood is still being burned, then in a way that pollutes as little as possible,” said alderman Eelco Eerenberg (Environment, D66).
At the beginning of this year, RIVM calculated that wood-burning stoves contribute 23 percent to particulate matter in the air. This can have harmful effects on people’s health.
The municipality of Nijmegen has been working on a trial in Nijmegen-West since October where residents can receive a maximum of 1,000 euros for removing or making their stove or fireplace more sustainable. The Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management will, upon request, NRC managed to inform the House of Representatives in the ‘first quarter’ of next year ‘about options for reducing wood smoke’.
Also read: Wood burning: the ‘hot potato that no one dares to swallow’