Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


Good quality wood equals healthier communities


Thursday 20 April 2017

Good quality wood equals healthier communities

With winter closing in and warm fires becoming more tempting, Horizons Regional Council is reminding the community of the importance of burning good quality, dry firewood.

Burning green, wet and treated wood, as well as other household items including rubbish, plastics, oils and food scraps, can have a detrimental impact on both human health and the environment.

Horizons environmental scientist Harold Barnett says the Council hopes to raise awareness of the importance of using good wood through winter with an air quality campaign that kicked off in March and will run until approximately September.

“Air quality in the Horizons Region is generally pretty good when compared to the national picture. However, in some urban areas wood burners used for home heating combined with the local topography can create issues for air quality.

“Burning green, wet or treated wood releases undesirable chemicals, gases and fine particles into the air. This reduces the quality of the air we breathe and can affect human health,” Mr Barnett says.

To help keep our air clean and neighbours healthy, Mr Barnett recommends a few simple steps:

• Burn dry firewood, as it burns more efficiently providing more heat and emits fewer particles into the air

• Don’t burn treated wood, household waste (especially plastics and oils) or food scraps

• Buy dry wood early and store it correctly

• Have your chimney swept annually

• Ensure your home is well insulated

• If possible, install a National Environment Standard (NES) compliant wood burner

“Burning dry firewood creates warmer and more efficient fires that smoke less and emit fewer fine particles known as PM10. This leads to clean air and overall healthier communities,” Mr Barnett says.

In addition to home heating, Mr Barnett says there are several things people should be aware of when burning vegetation and rubbish on their properties.

“When burning rubbish or vegetation it’s important to consider wind direction, odour and the impact that smoke or particulate matter might have on your neighbours.

“Burning rubber, PVC, plastic, waste oil, treated or painted timber and agricultural waste in your backyard is strictly prohibited. We urge people to think about those around them before burning rubbish and ensure they are doing all they can to be a good and considerate neighbour,” he says.

If you would like to learn more about air quality visit www.horizons.govt.nz/managing-natural-resources/air. If you have any concerns about air quality in your area, or any other questions regarding fires this winter, contact the Horizons Regional Council Pollution Hotline on freephone number 0508 800 800.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The EU’s Beef With Google

There’s every indication that Google would be on a losing wicket if it chooses to fight the European Union competition watchdogs, who have just levied a $3.3 billion fine on the firm – with the prospect of worse to come if Google doesn’t quickly change the anti-competitive practices at the heart of a court battle that’s been seven years in the making.

Essentially, the case involved Google’s alleged abuse of the stranglehold it enjoys on the online advertising associated with its search activities. More>>


Legislation: Point England Housing Bill Passed

The passage of the Point England Development Enabling Bill through Parliament this evening will benefit Auckland with additional housing, help resolve Ngāti Paoa’s Treaty claim and improve the local environment and recreation facilities, Building and Construction Minister Dr Nick Smith says. More>>


Cyberducation: Digital Curriculum Launch And Funding Package

Consultation on new digital technologies content for the New Zealand Curriculum and Te Marautanga o Aotearoa, the Māori-medium Curriculum, was launched today by Education Minister Nikki Kaye. More>>


PM's Press Conference: Red Socks And Secret Tapes

Prime Minister Bill English began his post-cabinet press conference by explaining how well the National Party's annual conference went. He also mentioned today's announcement of changes to the EQC disaster insurance legislation and wished Emirates Team New Zealand well in the America's Cup. More>>

Max Rashbrooke: On How To Make Government More Open

International surveys, while often complimentary, have also pinpointed major weaknesses: political donations are badly regulated, for instance, and appointments to government boards frequently go to those with strong political connections. More>>

In Court: Hamilton Student's Lawsuit Over Climate Change Policy

A law student from Hamilton is preparing to challenge the Government in the High Court on Monday over what she says is a “failure” to properly address climate change. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Fallout From The Barclay Tape

This is hardly a case of cleaning out your desk and being turfed out onto the pavement. As others have pointed out, the disgraced Clutha-Southland MP will remain on the public payroll for three months until the election, and for three months afterwards. More>>





Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election
  • PublicAddress
  • Pundit
  • Kiwiblog