Burn right tonight and cut wood smoke pollution

Released 16/05/2012

Burn right tonight - that's the message Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development, Simon Corbell, wants to get across to Canberrans using wood heaters as part of the ACT Government's campaign to cut wood smoke pollution.

"Canberrans enjoy relatively good air quality throughout the year, but smoke from domestic wood heaters remains the largest source of air pollution in Canberra," Mr Corbell said.

"Tuggeranong in particular has become an issue in winter with particle pollution due to emissions from wood heaters, as the area sits in a valley.

"The ACT Government will run advertising for the wood smoke campaign throughout winter and aim to minimise this pollution and help protect residents from the harmful health impacts."

Mr Corbell said it was important that Canberrans were aware of the effects of wood smoke so that they could use their wood heaters more effectively, or replace them.

"Residents with wood heaters are encouraged to use dry, well-seasoned and untreated wood to help reduce the amount of smoke billowing from residential chimneys, and not let heaters smoulder overnight as it doesn't burn clearly and generates a lot of unnecessary smoke.

"There are also great incentives for residents to replace their wood heater with more environmentally-friendly alternatives including an $800 rebate for a ducted gas system, and a $600 rebate for replacing it with new flued gas installations.

"Replacing old wood heaters is a simple and effective way that individual households can contribute to lowering pollution and protect both the environment and our health.

"Despite the 2010 ACT Air Quality Report showing that the ACT ranks very highly nationally in overall air quality compared to other capital cities, we must continue to help improve the quality of our air.

"The ACT Government has been undertaking ambient air quality monitoring in Canberra since the early 1990s and the Environment Protection Authority will continue to work with ACT Health on this important monitoring into the future," said Mr Corbell.

More information can be found at actsmart.act.gov.au/your_household/wood_heater_replacement_program

- Statement ends -

Section: Simon Corbell, MLA | Media Releases

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