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Would you recommend your builder, plumber, electrician or carpenter?
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messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by Ghlpc February 17, 09:25AM

Sue Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Shouldn't this thread be in the lounge?


Just saying that when I asked advice about something related to east dulwich or the local area, my thread had been moved to another section almost immediately - thus reducing its exposure and potential replies.

However important this subject, it's not a unique local issue.

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by bsand May 15, 01:51PM

If you have one then you are poisoning yourself, your children and the environment.

[www.theguardian.com]

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by jimbo1964 May 15, 04:39PM

bsand Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> If you have one then you are poisoning yourself,
> your children and the environment.

Looks like there should be a wok ban too.

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by goldilocks May 16, 11:09AM

Its true that there are other things that cause a spike in pollutants - though for wok cooking / toasting the duration is likely to be much lower unless you're actually running an industrial kitchen! The fact that cooking also produces pollutants (which incidentally are limited to your own house - so 'only' poisoning you and your immediate family) is not a reason to continue poisoning yourselves AND your neighbours via your woodburners.

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by savvygirl May 16, 04:57PM

I've had a woodburner for about 40 years. I was inspired to get one after visiting friends in Cornwall. I seem to be healthy enough and don't believe I've suffered any ill effects from having one. I only burn smokeless fuel or dried kiln logs (these are used initially with kindling to get the fire going). The woodburner is very efficient when it comes to heating a room. I find I can often turn the central heating off, even on the coldest winter's day! So in their favour, they are very efficient and fairly economical. I also had a register plate fitted which stops heat escaping up the chimney and debris falling down it . As well as being aesthetically pleasing they are extremely functional. On the downside, it does necessitate having the chimney swept on a regular basis and this I have done yearly around the end of August. A woodburner needs to be maintained properly which does mean replacing faulty parts but this has amounted to very little in the 40 years I've had mine. You just have to be a responsible owner, keep it properly maintained and not fall foul of the Clean Air Act!

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by goldilocks May 16, 05:02PM

We never used seatbelts when I was younger and Iím ok...

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by savvygirl May 16, 05:48PM

I thought I was making a valid point and I took the thread seriously - sorry goldilocks' but I find your above analogy somewhat flippant.

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by goldilocks May 16, 07:20PM

Savvygirl - you've got to understand that after 2 pages of discussion talking about the emissions of even the newest 'eco designed' stoves, for someone to come on and say that they've had a burner for 40 years and they've been ok and haven't suffered any ill effects isn't really addressing the point I was making and felt very much like the 'its never done me any harm' argument. But in terms of taking the thread seriously, and working on the assumption that you haven't seen any of the research on wood burning, I've added a few links for you to read.

I did start this thread on the premise that perhaps people who burned wood genuinely weren't aware of the environmental impact, especially given the stove manufacturers claims of green and eco burning. So in that spirt here are some links for you to read:

[twitter.com]

[www.theguardian.com]

There are many more, but these should give you a clearer idea of why I'm concerned about this in our area.

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by dbboy May 16, 10:53PM

Point made, you're anti wood burners.

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by James Barber May 17, 06:41AM

No dbboy, I think Goldilocks is anti air pollution.

Moves against some air pollution are being taken e.g. the ULEZ implementation in April. Even that 26% of vehicles entering the zone do not comply - i.e. old than 2006 for petrol and 2015 for diesel engine (excluding taxis with different rules).
Wood burner and open fire air pollution is getting worse as many are under the impression that they are doing a good thing by the environment by using them. I think/know, from meeting Goldilocks canvassing in the past, Goldilocks is trying to inform people so they can make a more informed choice on this. I did a page in SE22 on this very issue after talking with her circa two years ago.

--------------------
Regards jamesvbarber@gmail.com
former Liberal Democrat Councillor for East Dulwich Ward (2006-2018)
[www.jamesbarber.org.uk]
[twitter.com]

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by goldilocks May 17, 08:18AM

Thanks James - whilst you're right on the first point that its not a 'dislike of wood burners' but instead a hope that we could stop doing something so totally unnecessary that creates such a large amount of localised air pollution,

I'm afraid though that I'm not the person you met whilst canvassing! Two years ago I was blissfully unaware of how polluting wood burners were, I was still happily buying the line that they were a 'greener, carbon neutral' source of energy - I think I was even considering again whether we should fit one!

Even now that the data and the full impact is known, the 'advice' from environmental charities is very watered down, I assume in a bit to not alienate people, but having understood how harmful even new wood burners are, knowing that there are gas alternatives that look virtually identical but don't pollute in the same way in built up areas I wanted to make sure other people understood this.

I find it hard to believe that people really understand it and carry on with the same behaviour - whilst you could draw parallels with driving, it isn't really the same at all as people have many reasons why certain trips don't work on public transport / bikes for them, whereas the majority of people with wood burners could just turn on their central heating instead!

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by dbboy May 17, 09:27AM

yep and they probably use a burner because it's cheaper and lasts longer. keep banging on about the same point and people turn off. Maybe change the record!!!!!!!!!!!!

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by savvygirl May 17, 11:00AM

It is my intention to upgrade my woodburner and I will definitely do my research on the best eco-friendly one to buy. However, I will be looking for one that is efficient as well as economical as my house was built circa 1870 so not entirely sure cavity wall insulation is possible. As with many old Victorian houses, there are big bay windows and my house in particular has a good deal of glass as I have French windows in the sitting room as well as the bay. This is the reason for the woodburner which does the job of heating the room efficiently - the radiators alone come nowhere near doing this. I have always burned the correct fuel, particularly kiln dried logs and smokeless fuel and in doing so, thought I was being responsible. I think goldilocks you should be lobbying the Minister responsible for health and safety or the Minister for the environment which may be more effective than airing your views on this forum. Take some positive action which may make you feel better. As far as I know the Clean Air Act is up to date and there is a hefty fine if it's not complied with. Not sure where you can take it from there! You seem to be on some sort of crusade!

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by goldilocks May 17, 11:19AM

Did you know you can get gas fired 'burners' - ie that look the same but are gas powered? They're more of a clean fuel for burning in cities and look just as beautiful but without the negatives. I understand that people often need an additional source of heating in larger rooms - I also have a Victorian house so I'm not unaware of the issues. Some examples in the link below:

[thegasfireplace.com]

In relation to your final point of 'you seem to be on some kind of crusade' - whilst I'll ignore the idea that its zealotry that's implied with your choice of words, I am very passionate about reducing the horrific levels of air pollution locally. I have small children and would like them to grow up without breathing problems and reduced life expectancy. Obviously this won't be universal in any polluted area but the research is showing the impact is way further reaching than we originally realised.

[www.theguardian.com]

Lobbying government for action is clearly key, but it will take time and whilst that happens the levels of pollution in our area specifically seem to be increasing exponentially from wood burning. Even if one or two people in East Dulwich take a look at the evidence and stop burning wood then this will have been worth it.

messageRe: Do you have a woodburner?
Posted by savvygirl May 17, 04:28PM

Goldilocks, why on earth did you choose to live in London and raise a family here if this is such a major concern? If you want to change things you have to start with yourself and if living in London doesnít suit you, maybe you should consider moving away. Also, I did not mean to imply that you were a zealot, just someone with a bee in her bonnet as I believe you may have posted on this topic before. I also apologise for using the word crusade - it was not my intention to offend.
As far as a gas fired burner is concerned, I had one of these originally. It was totally ineffective on a bitter cold day and had nowhere near enough power to heat the room Ė they are more for ascetic purposes and can be very costly! The woodburner I now have is powerful and, as I said, I burn smokeless fuel and dried kiln logs. Newly chopped wood is a definite no no as it hasnít dried out and will cause masses of smoke. It needs to be stacked for at least a year, preferably two, and fully dried out before burning. When you have a woodburner, you have to be a responsible owner!

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