On the back of the recent snow and frost and in the run up to Christmas I am sure that many of us will be enjoying the warmth and comfort of a wood fire or wood burning stove. However, it is worth reflecting on some of the headlines over the summer and not least the proposal to ban wood burning stoves in certain areas of London.
I made reference to this issue in my earlier article “We need to avoid woodfuel becoming the next diesel”.
It is therefore worth remembering that by understanding how to manage our fires and fuel supply we can still enjoy all of the benefits, whilst maximising the benefit that using this renewable and sustainable fuel provides.
A few key tips to remembers:-
- Always burn good quality fuel that is dry and ready to burn;
- Ensure that if you do harvest green wood that it is correctly seasoned, ideally for two years, before it is burnt;
- Service and maintain your fire or stove to ensure that it works as efficiently as possible; and
- Keep your flue and chimney well swept to maximise efficiency.
Burning wood is sustainable and is critical in helping to bring our invaluable tree and woodland resource back into sustainable management. Our connection with fire is difficult to explain, but the pleasure and enjoyment that a real fire brings is something that warms the heart as well as our body.
As we enjoy these pleasures we need to make sure that we protect them by understanding how we can, with a little thought, do our bit to ensure that we secure its place in our future energy plans.