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American Energy Systems Gives Grant for Corn Silo

A unique partnership between an HPBA corn/pellet stove manufacturer, a hearth retailer, an environmental group and a community will reduce the community's dependence on fossil fuels and fight global warming by burning renewable corn fuel for heat.

HPBA stove manufacturer American Energy Systems gave Washington, DC suburb Tacoma Park MD a grant to purchase a 25 foot grain silo to store 21 tons of organically fertilized, no tilled corn to heat a dozen homes. The homeowners' coop, the Save Our Sky Home-Heating Cooperative, will collectively keep 104,000 pounds of carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere each year.

At the ribbon-cutting ceremony on November 18, local politicians, community members, American Energy Systems President Mike Haefner, HPBA President Carter Keithley, PFI Executive Director Leslie Wheeler, and man media representatives were present. The silo is erected on municipal land and coop members fill bushels buckets of corn on an honor system. The coop is confident that the number of homes heated will grow when the word gets out.

This partnership is a win-win situation for everyone. The stove manufacturer will sell more stoves to the retailer, hearth retailer Cornburners, Inc. in Mt Airy, MD will sell more stoves to the coop, the coop members will save approximately $200-$300 dollars a year on heating costs, the farmer will sell more corn, and everyone will contribute to the reduction of global warming. And, there is an additional incentive for Maryland retailers. In June, 2002, corn stoves and pellet stoves that can burn corn were exempt form the Maryland's state sales tax. This is another significant savings to the consumer

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