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Wood Burning Fireplaces Banned in SoCal


Burning wood in fireplaces within homes in Southern California has been banned. According to the LA Times, this ban will only be applied to homeowners about a dozen days throughout the year when air quality is at its worst. Here are the specifics of this ban:

1. Builders are banned from installing wood burning fireplaces in new homes
2. It will be illegal to buy and install a wood burning fireplace while remodeling a home.
3. Gas burning fireplaces will be allowed.
4. The ban does not apply to restaurants that use wood burning stoves, like California Pizza Kitchen.
5. Homeowners that used a wood burning fireplace as their only source of heat will not be affected.
6. Those who live above 3000 feet in elevation will not be affected.
7. Beach fires will still be allowed
8. Tribal ceremony fires will still be allowed.

The LA Times also said:

Fireplaces are used in about 1.4 million of the 5 million households governed by the district, producing an average six tons a day of particulate soot in the air basin, according to the air district.

Numerous studies have linked fine particulate matter, which sinks deep into the lungs, to increased lung and respiratory problems. State officials say an estimated 5,000 premature deaths each year in the region are linked to fine particulate exposure.

About 106 tons of fine particulate soot is directly emitted every day in the Los Angeles area, according to the air district. The new regulations will reduce that by an average of about 1 ton a day.

The winter wood-burning ban will apply in areas where forecasts show federal daily limits for fine particulate matter will be exceeded. That will amount to about two dozen days from November to March each year, regulators said.

Residents most likely to be affected by the regulation include those in the Inland Empire and the San Gabriel Valley, where soot carried by prevailing winds is trapped by mountains.

People all over Southern California are angry that their personal freedoms are being infringed upon. They think that they should be able to have a fire anytime they please. Here is a quote from the LA Times article:

You're not going to regulate my chimney," Stewart Cumming of San Bernardino told the board during a heated public hearing in Diamond Bar. He vowed to continue using his fireplace as he chose.

L.A. Mama says:
I am sure there are thousands of others who will follow his lead...apparently they have never had a child who has been hospitalized three times between the ages of
1 1/2 and 2 1/2 for severe respiratory distress and asthma. They have never experienced the frightening situation of a toddler gasping for air, turning blue and passing out in their arms like I have. They have never experienced a medical staff that was so concerned about his life that he was almost put on life support. Is it too much to ask someone to not use their fireplace 12 days out of the year for the sake of the health and well-being of others?

This is a pic of California getting one of his daily nebulizer treatments from DADDIO to control his breathing problems and to keep him ALIVE. Those who value their personal freedom over the well-being of others should take a look at this pic, stop being selfish and think twice about their choices.

3 comments:

prelude619 said...

LA mamma I don't know what to think. I think both sides have a point but especially in Los Angeles where the smog is bad. I just don't think that wood burning chimneys are that big of a deal considering there are other polutants that need to be regulated especially in LA. I'm from LA and Ive been there when at times, you can barely see the downtown skyline. Even being next to it, but I doubt all that smog is coming from thousands of chimneys burning simultaniously when you have even more tons of smog coming from industrial areas. But then again what do I know, I don't live there anymore. I'm in San Diego where the air (not to brag) is pretty clean year round. I just think the biggest threat is and will always be the smog producing factories. I doubt that cutting off wood burning chimneys will help at all. I want to see a difference when this takes effect. Eliminating chimneys in LA is like taking 1 penny out of a million dollars. You'll still have crappy smog days in LA no matter what. I think they should concentrate more on the factories, I think then we WILL see a diference.

L.A. Mama said...

I totally see your point and it is a valid one. What the article didn't point out is that California has the strictest air quality standards in the country for corporations, factories and emissions. This is just one more to get us all on the same page. The reason why the smog is so bad is because of how L.A. is situated...between numerous mountain ranges - the bad air gets trapped between the mountains and lies stagnant. Then it drifts slowly and hangs around until we get a good Santa Ana to blow it away. Oh - but then we get wildfires - LOL :)

prelude619 said...

yes I was aware of that too, of how LA is situated. Very unforturnate because the city of La is so beautiful. Well I guess the city's gotta do what it's gotta do. :)