South Burlington takes next step toward wood chip heat

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The South Burlington school board is taking the next step toward heating the middle and high schools with wood chips.

The board voted 3-2 in favor of moving forward with the $1.9 million proposal that had been delayed after some complained the system would pollute the air and mar school grounds with a 65-foot-tall smokestack.

Supporters say the project will reduce the school’s carbon footprint, make use of a renewable Vermont fuel and eventually save money. A report says emissions from the system will be within air quality standards.

About 40 Vermont schools have wood-heat systems.

The state would pay 90 percent of the cost.

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