Coun­cil con­sid­ers re­port on poor air qual­ity

South Waikato News - - NEWS -

Ways to im­prove Toko­roa’s air qual­ity will be dis­cussed at a South Waikato District Coun­cil meet­ing to­mor­row.

The meet­ing of the coun­cil’s Com­mu­nity and As­sets Com­mit­tee will con­sider a re­port by air qual­ity spe­cial­ists En­vi­ronet.

The re­port out­lines the causes of Toko­roa’s poor air qual­ity dur­ing win­ter and ways of im­prov­ing the situ- ation. The biggest prob­lem for Toko­roa comes from PM10, fine par­ti­cles in air which are in­vis­i­ble to the eye.

Toko­roa breached the na­tional stan­dard of 50 mi­cro­grams per cu­bic me­tre at least 16 times this win­ter with one oc­ca­sion in July recorded lev­els al­most twice the na­tional stan­dard.

The En­vi­ronet re­port said 86 per cent of the PM10 was from the burn­ing of solid fu­els in homes. A fur­ther seven per cent comes from cars, six per cent from out­door fires and one per cent from in­dus­try.

The re­port con­sid­ered sev­eral op­tions for im­prov­ing air qual­ity in Toko­roa. These in­cluded ban­ning the use of open fires, phas­ing out wood burn­ers, pro­hibit­ing the in­stal­la­tion of wood burn­ers, pro­vid­ing in­cen­tives to in­stall in­su­la­tion and cleaner heat­ing meth­ods in homes and ed­u­ca­tion around the use of wood burn­ers.

South Waikato District Coun­cil pro­vides $ 200,000 to­wards the in­su­la­tion of homes in the district un­der the Warm Homes Clean Air project.

Close to 700 homes have been in­su­lated since the pro­gramme started in 2004.

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