The government has confirmed today in its Environmental Improvement Plan 2023 that it is NOT considering a ban on domestic burning in England.
It has also announced smoke emissions limits for Smoke Control Areas will be cut from 5g to a maximum of 3g per hour, a measure that is welcomed by the Stove Industry Association.
The industry’s ongoing commitment to continuous improvement means that a large number of appliances in production (e.g. many clearSkies Levels 4 and 5 certified appliances) already meet this new target, and manufacturers are well placed to rise to the challenge of ensuring that all new appliances will comply.
The government has also confirmed that it will look to extend solid fuel legislation to fuels burnt outside. This is in-line with our messaging that, for some time now, has highlighted the issue of outdoor burning and the importance of accurate PM emissions source apportionment.
The SIA and its members will continue to work to ensure that consumers are supported with information to help them switch from open fires and older stoves to modern appliances that meet these tough new emissions standards; stoves that provide a very low carbon, low emission and cost-effective way of keeping homes and families warm using low carbon, renewable and sustainable fuel.
SIA Top Tips
- Choose an Ecodesign compliant wood burning stove such as a clearSkies certified appliance. If you currently use an open fire or an older, very basic wood burning stove consider upgrading. A modern Ecodesign compliant wood burning stove, such as a clearSkies model, releases up to 90% less emissions than an open fire and can be up to 80% less than some older stoves. Your local SIA Retail Group member can help advise on the best stove for you and your family.
- If you live in a Smoke Control Area, your stove will also need to be Defra exempt. All clearSkies Level 3 and above models are certified as Defra exempt.
- Visit your local stove retailer for guidance on choosing the right size stove for your property and for a detailed installation quote. You can find your nearest SIA Retail Group member showroom here.
- Ensure your stove is fitted and maintained by an appropriately qualified competent person such as one who is HETAS or OFTEC
- Ensure you use quality wood fuel. Look for the Ready to Burn logo to ensure your wood logs are at or below 20% moisture content. Never used chemically treated wood or burn waste on your stove.
- Have your chimney swept at least once a year by a registered sweep. The Federation of British Chimney Sweeps has links to all the main sweep associations. Chimney sweeps are a valuable source of information for good practice and advice – and they are happy to engage and encourage you to “Speak to a Sweep”.
- Keep your stove in tip top condition by having it regularly serviced.