Skip to comments.Clean-air agency makes burn-ban violators feel heat (Seattle)
Posted on 04/13/2009 1:26:44 PM PDT by WOBBLY BOB
Donald Harmon's attempt to save a few bucks on his heating bill could cost him $850 more than half his monthly Social Security because he picked the wrong fuel. The 82-year-old retiree was hit with a hefty fine in January for burning wood to take away the chill in his kitchen and the living area in his North Seattle home. The Puget Sound Clean Air Agency had declared a burn ban that day. While Harmon was feeding broken-up pallets into his woodstove, an agency inspector was outside taking notes and photos as the smoke rose from the chimney. "It would take me a year or more to pay something like that," Harmon said. He said he was unaware the ban was in place that day, and wondered: "Why didn't they knock on the door and tell me to put it out?"
(Excerpt) Read more at seattletimes.nwsource.com ...
Cap-and-Trade an Economic Nightmare
At his age he should have wasted the guy taking notes . So what !
No longer the Land of the Free, but the Land of the Subservient Freeloader.
Because it is not about clean air or the environment, nor was it ever.
Der Kommissar (English) LYRICS
She was singin
Don’t turn around, oh oh
Der Kommissar’s in town, oh oh
You’re in his eye
And you’ll know why
The more you live
The faster you will die
In fairness, if you have an EPA certified woodstove, you can still use it during a Stage 1 burn ban. The $850 fine is about 1/3rd of the cost of a new stove, and there are programs in the State that will pay up to $1500 of the cost of a new stove.
We took advantage of the local woodstove replacement program this year, and the new stove we got is 78% efficient, doesn’t need a blower to distribute the heat, puts out 1.1 grams per hour of particulates, and has already cut our use of wood by 2/3rds.
These burn bans may seem onerous, but so is the smoke from non-certified woodstoves, and there are programs in place to help avoid situations like this one.
Who needs an EPA certified woodstove when the friction from the founding fathers whirling in their graves can keep you toasty warm all through those long winter nights?
ECONAZI is a term I have been using lately and some people just don’t get it.
Wow, that picture looks almost identical to one my mother took of their (my mom and dads) first home. They lived there for 3 years.
“Why didn’t they knock on the door and tell me to put it out?”
They didn’t want to find out if he was a gun owner?
,but if it saves one child...
At second look, my folks house didn’t have siding, just tar-paper ‘siding’.
...must have been pre-ACORN and Fannie Mae.
but so is the smoke from non-certified woodstoves..
Of everything stated on this thread, it is your post that is “onerous.”
- Not wood smoke for God’s sake.
Thank you very little for that (not so) polite response.
If you would read the article, you would see that the issue at hand is woddstove smoke, and the amount of smoke non-certified stoves produce.
If you bothered to read the article, you would see that there are 800,000 woodstoves in the Pugetopolis area. Most people ignored the voluntary efforts to try and reduce the smoke that hangs in the air during temperature inversions, so fines were authorized.
If you would read the article, you would know that those who heat exclusively with wood or have no other viable source of heat are exempt from the burn ban.
If you read the article, this guy had a violation a year ago on his home-made system, so that might have had something to do with why someone was checking to see if he was still breaking the law, and son of a gun! He was!
As I said, there are programs in place to avoid this situation, and IF YOU WOULD READ THE FRACKIN’ ARTICLE, you would likely already know that too....
Catching my drift??
I was asked to post some information about clean burning wood stoves, and what follows is the basic information I had found online locally, through the Southwest Washington Clean Air Agency. I am about 220 miles South of Seattle, so our local agency isn’t as stringent (yet) on their enforcement.
In order to meet Washington emission standards (WAC 173-433), the particulate emissions must be less than or equal to 2.5 grams per hour for catalytic woodstoves and 4.5 grams per hour for non-catalytic woodstoves. If you don’t see a particular model of a woodstove listed here, check EPA’s list of woodstoves for detailed manufacturer information. Remember, Washington’s emission standards for woodstoves are almost twice as strict as those of the EPA, so verify the manufacturer’s information meets the Washington standards of 2.5 grams per hour for catalytic woodstoves and 4.5 grams per hour for non-catalytic woodstoves.
Pellet stoves are not exempt from Washington emission standards. All pellet stoves for sale in the state of Washington are subject to AAA testing to prove compliance with state law.
For additional information on certification in SWCAA’s region (Clark, Cowlitz,
Lewis, Skamania and Wahkiakum counties in Washington state) call 360-574-3058 or
1-800-633-0709. If you live outside SWCAA’s region, please call your local air agency.
Air Quality Advisories and Wood Stove Curtailments What You
Need to Know for this Heating Season
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Nov. 5, 2008
VANCOUVER, Wash. - In cooler weather, the smell of wood smoke wafts from chimneys in many of our neighborhoods. While some may like the smell, wood smoke is a serious public health concern. This winter the Southwest Clean Air Agency (SWCAA) may call upon residents who have another source of heat to temporarily cease wood burning to reduce levels of fine particle pollution.
On cold nights with little or no wind, wood smoke pollution can accumulate to levels that are considered unhealthy. Fine particles released by smoke from wood stoves, fireplaces and other burning are of concern because they can reach deep into the lungs. Episodes of high fine particle pollution can trigger asthma attacks, cause difficulty breathing and make lung and heart problems worse.
In years past, the Southwest Clean Air Agency (SWCAA) has asked southwest Washington residents to voluntarily limit wood burning during Air Pollution Advisories. However, recent revisions to Washington state law now require that when levels of fine particle pollution are forecasted to reach unhealthy levels, SWCAA must notify Washington residents to curtail wood burning activities and use an alternative source of heat if they have one. These mandatory, temporary wood burning curtailments exempt residents whose only source of heat is burning wood.
The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ), as in years past, will continue to ask Oregon residents to voluntarily limit their wood burning by issuing Air Pollution Advisories when fine particulate pollution is expected to rise to unhealthy levels.
Our respective agencies share the same airshed and the same concerns about wood smoke and public health, says DEQ spokesperson William Knight. Well continue to monitor the quality of our air and well continue to let people know when pollution reaches unsafe levels. Though we do not have the authority at this time to ban woodstove use during a pollution event, our air advisories will urge Oregonians to follow southwest Washingtons example.
When poor air quality conditions are widespread enough to impact southwest Washington as well as Portland, the Southwest Clean Air Agency will issue mandatory Stage 1 or Stage 2 wood burning curtailments for Washington residents. These may be issued at the same time as Oregons Air Pollution Advisories.
SWCAA will be urging southwest Washington residents to comply with these wood burning curtailments, said Bob Elliott, executive director of the clean air agency. Reducing the areas wood smoke is vital to keeping our air quality in compliance with federal health-based standards.
These curtailments will likely come in two progressive stages:
Stage 1: The use of all fireplaces and uncertified wood stoves and inserts is banned when pollution is forecasted to reach unhealthy levels. Uncertified units are typically older than 1993 and lack a certification label on the back of the unit.
Stage 2: All wood heating is prohibited, including certified units, when the Stage 1 curtailment has not reversed the increasing pollution trend and weather conditions still indicate a high risk for exceeding air quality health standards.
These curtailments will not apply to homes with no other source of adequate heat. All outdoor burning is also banned during these burn bans. If the air quality forecast is exceptionally bad and air pollution levels are expected to rise very rapidly, SWCAA may need to call a Stage 2 curtailment without first calling a Stage 1.
To sign up to receive e-mail notifications of these wood stove curtailment burn bans, click here. To receive Air Pollution Advisories from Oregon DEQ, visit www.deq.state.or.us/aq/advisories.
Tips for Cleaner Burning:
The most complete and effective way to reduce wood smoke pollution is to use another form of heat. If you must use wood, or choose to do so when local rules permit, the following recommendations can help diminish the emissions from your wood stove, fireplace or fireplace insert:
* Only burn dry, seasoned wood. Be sure your firewood has been split and dried for at least one year.
* Never burn wet, painted, stained or treated wood, color newsprint, plastic, garbage, diapers or magazines. Items such as these produce high amounts of odor, smoke and toxic fumes. Burning these materials is illegal and also an excellent way to start a chimney fire.
* Store your firewood under cover. A shed or shelter is best. If you use a plastic tarp, allow ventilation to prevent condensation.
* Burn small, hot fires. This helps the wood burn completely and cleanly.
* Never allow the fire to smolder. Smoldering fires are the worst polluters because they burn at a temperature too low for efficient combustion. The result is more smokeunburned wood going up the chimney, wasted.
* Do not damper too much. Allow enough air for the wood to burn fully, without smoldering. Never try to keep the fire going overnight by cutting back the air supply. This wastes wood, produces much smoke and creosote and produces little heat.
* Step outside and look at the plume from your chimney. You should see only heat waves. If you can see smoke, your wood is not burning completely. Increase the air supply to your fire.
* Size your wood stove properly. A stove that is too large for the space to be heated will have to be damped down, causing much smoke and wasting wood.
* Do not burn in moderate temperatures. Your stove will tend to overheat your house. You will want to close the dampers to cut back on the heat, which cuts oxygen to the fire, wastes wood and increases pollution.
* Do not install a wood stove until you have considered other ways to cut heating costs. Insulating and weather stripping can cost less than a wood stove and will reduce your heating requirements, whether your heat source is wood, oil, gas or electricity.
* Do not install an uncertified stoveinstallation of uncertified stoves is illegal. These stoves are more polluting.
Founded in 1968, the mission of the Southwest Clean Air Agency is to preserve and enhance the air quality in southwest Washington. Serving the counties of Clark, Cowlitz, Lewis, Skamania and Wahkiakum, SWCAA is responsible for protecting the publics health through the enforcement of federal, state and local air quality standards and regulations.
# # #
For more information contact:
William Knight, Communications & Outreach
Oregon Department of Environmental Quality
“, an agency inspector was outside taking notes and photos as the smoke rose from the chimney.”
It’s little bureaucratic weasels like this piece of trash that kept the Stalin and Hitler murder machines going. Without the mindless bureaucrats to harass people, no totalitarian state can continue to function.
As far as the SW Washington Clean Air Agency is concerned, and contrary to popular belief, these people are not Enviro-Nazis. Their jobs all well pre-date the entire Obama Administration, in fact I think they have been in existence during the terms of several Presidents, Democrat and Republican.
I realize to the uninitiated, these burn bans seem onerous, but I can assure you they are not. We often get inversions during the winter that are just terrible, especially because of the smoke from older un-certified, and un-certifiable woodstoves. I was stunned when I started looking into the technology that is available, and the stove we bought took us completely off-grid for heating this winter. I can heat my entire house with 1/3 of the wood I used in the old stove. This stove needs no electric blower like the old one did, and unlike a pellet stove, it will work if the electricity fails.
The efficiency of my old stove was about 20%, meaning that most of the heat and combustible gases went up the chimney. When you can see smoke, that is un-burnt combustion products that are just stinking up the air. My new stove has 3-4 different stages of combustion and simply does not smoke when it is up to temperature.
My new stove is 78% efficient, as compared to the old stove’s 20% efficiency. That equates to reducing the amount of seasoned, split hardwood I have to stack each fall, and that saves me even more money than the woodstove does compared to using the heat pump.
I turn our heat pump off at the breaker when I fire up the stove, and use our zoned, forced air circulating system to distribute the heat throughout the house. I’ve overheated our house several times this winter while learning to use the new stove, to the point where we had to open windows on a 30 degree night to vent the excess heat.
In addition, we had three chimney fires with the old stove, because unless I cleaned the chimney every week during heating season, it would accumulate cresote, no matter what. I have not had to clean the chimney since we installed the new stove, because the creosote combusts before it can condense in the chimney. When the stove is hot, you see heat waves coming out of the chimney, not smoke.
The woodstove replacement program we applied for provided us a $1500 coupon that was good for 60 days, toward the replacement of our old, non-certified (and non-certifiable...) woodstove. The total cost came in at right around $3000, including installation and new inside double-walled pipe; or about half of the total cost. that enabled us to comu up with the other half out of hide, and avoid any finance charges on the installation. In addition, we will qualify for an energy credit on our 2009 tax return.
As I understand it, the program is partially funded by woodstove vendors and other sources in the State. It generates business for local vendors and installers, as well as sales tax revenue for the localities.
So, what’s not to like about this? I personally felt like the whole program was an economic stimulus that my wife and I could be proud of...
Nonsense. They already had 1 violation from this guy the year before, and it makes absolute sense to go back and see if he is still in violation this year. That’s what meaningful law enforcement is all about, otherwise we have anarchy.
The story also mentions that he was burning reject pallets. Pallets are usually made of hardwood, but by the time they get rejected for regular use, they are usually coated with all kinds of crud, which means that they stink like hell when some bright bulb like this guy burns them in his vintage home-made heating system. This guy is an anachronism from the description of his system, and probably isn’t the best example to use, but he is in direct violation of the existing law.
We still enforce the law in this Country which is still a good thing, and if we disagree with the Law, then we have means for changing them. Not every law enforcement action is by some kind of Nazi, and it diminishes this website when you sling that work around like you were at DU.
Try the decaf my friend...
If I get another job in WA I’m living in Kittitas
Co away from these econazis.