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Auckland Council postpones indoor fire decision

Auckland Council postpones indoor fire decision

Auckland Council’s Governing Body today made a decision to postpone the passing of the Air Quality Bylaw. The proposed bylaw aims to manage indoor fires to reduce air pollution and meet National Environmental Standards for Air Quality (AQNES).

Councillors agreed that further discussion was needed with the government to meet their legislative requirement and garner support for the large number of Aucklanders this bylaw will affect.

Councillor Calum Penrose, Chair Regulatory and Bylaws Committee says, “We have over 80,000 households in Auckland that currently use open fires and old wood burners. We would like the government to work with us in providing people with clean heat alternatives and support the more vulnerable in our community whose only form of heating is open fires.”

Cr Penrose recognised that the proposed bylaw needs to be put through to meet the AQNES and also for the overall health of the wider Auckland community – 110 people dying a year from illnesses due to fine particle emissions from indoor fires is another vital reason to rectify this problem.

The proposed Air Quality Bylaw will go back to the Regulatory and Bylaws Committee in February 2015 with further clarification on support for alternative heating options. The overall timeframe of an indoor fire ban in late 2018 is not expected to change.

ENDS

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