An eastern Nebraska company that makes wood-burning furnaces is putting an end to its product line. Mark Setzer is president and co-owner of HeatSource-1 in Beatrice.
Setzer claims the federal EPA has regulated the makers of wood-burning furnaces so tightly, it’s become nearly impossible to stay in business.
“It’s a good product,” Setzer says. “All manufacturers feel and have felt for a couple of years that EPA is run by big oil companies. Consequently, big oil companies only want you to burn oil and not wood, so we feel there was a strong influence by big oil companies in this.”
He says the EPA put new regulations in place in 2007 on wood-burning furnaces. Now, the agency says a factory redesign is required that will be very expensive. Setzer says the economy is also hurting his business.
“People out there are very leary on big item purchases right now,” he says. “Our furnace was designed to heat an entire house or several buildings off of wood and made it very economical. As soon as big oil companies saw what we were doing, I maintain they’re the ones behind this whole thing.”
No jobs will be lost with the ending of furnace production. The company will announce a new product line in about two weeks and expects to add employees.
Setzer Manufacturing, in business since 1973, plans to continue metal fabrication, powder coating and abrasive and soda blasting.
Doug Kennedy, KWBE, Beatrice