Delta wants more done on wood burning front

Fireplaces and appliances causing pollution

Neither the regional district nor municipalities like Delta can ban the installation of polluting wood-burning fireplaces or appliances in homes, despite their impact on air quality.

It's something that needs to change, according to Delta council, which recently discussed a staff report on the issue.

article continues below

"It occurred to me we seem to make a great to-do about diesel engines and other industries polluting, and yet, wood smoke, which is originating in the Lower Mainland, is the number one source of particulate in the region," said Mayor Lois Jackson.

"I think we have to pay a lot more attention because if this is 25 per cent of the particulate in the whole Lower Mainland, it's one of the worst because this can be a killer for people," she said.

The report notes residential wood smoke is seen as the main primarily unregulated source of fine particulate emissions in the region and its relative contribution to local air pollution is increasing as successful measures to reduce other sources of fine particulate have been implemented.

Legislation exists at the provincial and regional level that can potentially prohibit a resident from using a wood-burning appliance if pollution is occurring. Metro Vancouver is looking at potential regulatory actions, but the authority rests with the province, which is currently reviewing emission standards for wood-burning appliances sold in B.C. The issue came up in Delta last fall when an air quality advisory was issued for much of the Metro Vancouver region, specifically Richmond, Surrey, Langley, Pitt Meadows, Delta and New Westminster.

Conditions reportedly deteriorated due to the burning of wood stoves and fireplaces, according to the regional district.

Council at the time asked for a report on the issue and during discussion recently, deputy planning director Marcy Sangret noted Delta does not have the authority to ban wood-burning appliances in new home construction. All those applications must do is adhere to the B.C. Building Code.

Noting she does not believe any Lower Mainland municipality has tried to implement such as ban, Sangret said only a small percentage of new homes have wood-burning devices. In fact, last year just one application was approved.

Read Related Topics

© Delta Optimist


NOTE: To post a comment you must have an account with at least one of the following services: Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ You may then login using your account credentials for that service. If you do not already have an account you may register a new profile with Disqus by first clicking the "Post as" button and then the link: "Don't have one? Register a new profile".

The Delta Optimist welcomes your opinions and comments. We do not allow personal attacks, offensive language or unsubstantiated allegations. We reserve the right to edit comments for length, style, legality and taste and reproduce them in print, electronic or otherwise. For further information, please contact the editor or publisher, or see our Terms and Conditions.

comments powered by Disqus

    Subscription Club: $5/month or $50/year - Receive monthly deals from local merchants.

Opinion POLL

What do you think about the concept of a cashless casino?

or  view results

Popular Delta Optimist