Program helps diminish winter air pollution
The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District has announced the start of its annual wood-burning curtailment program, which is intended to keep winter air cleaner.
The tenth season of Check Before You Burn started Nov. 1 and lasts through February. The program determines when residential wood burning will add dangerous levels of particulate matter, which are tiny pieces of soot, ash, dust and other materials, into the Valley’s air. When that’s the case, residential wood-burning ―including fireplaces, wood-burning inserts and heaters, pellet stoves and outdoor devices such as fire pits and chimineas― is prohibited. The other forecast may be “Please burn cleanly.” In that instance, the district encourages residents to use manufactured fire logs or dry, seasoned wood. Gas fireplace is always allowed.
A wood-burning forecast is issued daily in each of the eight counties that comprise the Valley’s air basin.
“Because of Valley residents’ ongoing efforts and understanding of the importance of changing long-ingrained habits in ways that reduce emissions, Check Before You Burn has resulted in historically clean wintertime air quality in the Valley over the past several years,” said Janelle Schneider, spokeswoman for Valley Air District...