Check Be­fore You Burn En­ters 15th Sea­son

Escalon Times - - NEWS -

San Joaquin Val­ley Air Pol­lu­tion Con­trol Dis­trict Of­fi­cials are re­mind­ing res­i­dents to check be­fore us­ing their res­i­den­tial wood burn­ing de­vices as the weather turns colder.

Dur­ing win­ter, the largest source of par­tic­u­late pol­lu­tion comes from res­i­den­tial wood burn­ing.

“The ‘Check Be­fore You Burn’ pro­gram pro­vides an op­por­tu­nity for Val­ley res­i­dents to do their part to help re­duce air pol­lu­tion and im­prove pub­lic health through­out the San Joaquin Val­ley,” said Seyed Sadredin, the Dis­trict’s ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor and air pol­lu­tion con­trol of­fi­cer.

Check Be­fore You Burn runs Nov. 1 through the end of Fe­bru­ary each year. The Air Dis­trict is­sues a daily wood-burn­ing sta­tus by county. Daily burn sta­tuses are avail­able by call­ing 1-800-SMOG INFO (7664463); by down­load­ing the free iPhone app “Val­ley Air” from the App Store; or Val­ley res­i­dents may sign up for email no­ti­fi­ca­tions by vis­it­ing www.val­leyair.org/CBYB.

In or­der to take ad­van­tage of ad­di­tional burn days, Val­ley res­i­dents should regis­ter their clean EPA Phase II wood or pel­let burn­ing de­vice with the Dis­trict by vis­it­ing www.val­leyair.org/CBYBreg­is­tra­tion.

Val­ley res­i­dents want­ing to switch out older wood-burn­ing de­vices for a cleaner model can take ad­van­tage of the Dis­trict’s Burn Cleaner grants which pro­vide $1,000 for cer­ti­fied wood, pel­let in­serts, free­stand­ing stoves or nat­u­ral gas in­serts or $2,500 for eli­gi­ble low-in­come ap­pli­cants for all de­vices. An ad­di­tional $500 is avail­able to all ap­pli­cants for the in­stal­la­tion costs on a nat­u­ral gas de­vice. To par­tic­i­pate in this pro­gram, visit www.val­leyair.org/burn­cleaner.

“Wood smoke is one of the most dan­ger­ous pol­lu­tants that you can ex­pose your­self, your chil­dren, and your neigh­bors to,” said Seyed Sadredin. “Pro­longed ex­po­sure to wood smoke can lead to pul­monary ar­te­rial hy­per­ten­sion, pul­monary heart dis­ease, heart fail­ure and can­cer.”

There are two ex­cep­tions to wood-burn­ing pro­hi­bi­tions: If the res­i­dence does not have an­other source of heat or if the res­i­dence does not have ac­cess to nat­u­ral­gas ser­vice (even if propane is used), they are ex­empt from the rule and may con­tinue to use their de­vice. Res­i­dents may get ex­emp­tion in­for­ma­tion at www.val­leyair.org/Rule4901. Ad­di­tion­ally, fire­place in­serts or stoves that run solely on gas or propane, and never burn wood, con­tinue to be ex­empt from the rule. Wood-burn­ing dec­la­ra­tions also ap­ply to out­door de­vices and chimineas.

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