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Domestic Wood Burning

Air quality

To make a complaint about air quality, please use our online report it form.

Are you 'Ready to Burn'?

Since 1st May 2021 the Government has introduced new laws in the attempt to phase out the most polluting fuels and to improve air quality. The new laws apply to the sale of coal, wood and manufactured solid fuels.

Air quality and wood fuel has become a hot topic and stove owners are being asked to think about the impact burning poor quality firewood has on their health and the environment. A stove is only as good as the wood it burns and so the Ready to Burn stamp of approval will reassure those who purchase firewood/briquettes with its logo that they are dry enough and immediately ready to burn.

For more information please visit the Ready to Burn website External Hyperlink.

If you believe a supplier of wood is not compliant with the new regulations then please contact Hampshire County Council trading standards External Hyperlink.

Air pollution from open fires and wood-burning stoves

Domestic wood burning has become more popular in recent years. People enjoy the sound of crackling logs and the smoky aroma. People see it as an efficient heating method.   

Unfortunately, domestic wood and coal burning are now the single largest contributors to our harmful particulate matter emissions comprising 40% in 2015. This compares to emissions from industrial combustion (17%) and road transport (13%). The tiny particles in smoke can cause a range of health impacts such as breathing problems and exacerbating asthma.

If you are someone who uses an open fire or a wood burning stove, we would like to bring your attention to a couple of publications that provide some advice on how you might choose to reduce pollution levels.

Firstly, a practical guide from DEFRA on 'Open fires and wood-burning stoves' External Hyperlink provides simple steps to reduce environmental and health impacts whilst benefitting you through maximising efficiency, reducing maintenance costs and keeping chimneys in a better condition. Secondly, professional chimney sweeps have produced a document entitled 'We all breathe the same air' External Hyperlink and this again provides good advice on lighting a stove to minimise smoke emissions.  

Some Dos and Don'ts include:

You are not in a Smoke Control Area if you live in Fareham (or Gosport) but if you moved to such an area, you would have to use authorised fuels on open fires and/or use an exempted wood-burning appliance with a specified fuel.    

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