Wood Burning Stoves - Environmental Impact
Stoves, Wood and the Environment
We all have an obligation to the environment. Making informed energy decisions now will reflect in the environment in the years to come. Whether we put another log on the fire or turn the central heating up a couple of degrees has an impact on the environment beyond just keeping us warm. The government has promised to reduce CO2 emissions by 50% by the year 2050. By installing a woodburning stove you will be able to do your part.
Why Use Firewood?
Wood is naturally environmentally friendly as it consumes more carbon dioxide whilst growing than it emits during burning. It is also one of the few fuels that is renewable in our lifetime. Most other sources of power come from fossil fuels – these take thousands of years to evolve and are being consumed faster than they can be replenished by nature.
Woodburning is highly efficient. A modern electricity generating power station is in fact 20% less efficient at producing energy than your stove.
Wood as a renewable fuel
If using wood from a sustainable source,the pruning and harvesting of overgrown woodlands not only provides fuel for woodstoves but also promotes the growth of healthy trees that can absorb up to 3 times as much CO2 as is released when the wood is burned. Because of this fact The Carbon Trust recognises that wood is the only zero rated fuel available. The following chart from the Carbon Trust gives examples of how many kg of CO2 is emitted into the atmosphere by an average UK family home.
|Fuel||kg of CO2 per week|
|Coal/Wood 50% mix||58 kg|
Seasoning and Storing Logs
The Stove Company are conscious of the environmental issues affecting our world. We recommend that you burn seasoned wood purchased from a sustainable forest management scheme. Because trees contain an lot of water, wood felled during one winter should be seasoned over the following summer. The logs should be cut to length and stored outside under cover, protected from rain. If possible it is always best to season the wood for 2 years before burning to enable the moisture content to be reduced to about 20%. If using wood with a higher moisture content tar will be produced during the burning process.
Wood and its effect on your local environment
Firewood management can create rural employment, increase revenue and play a major part in reversing rural decline. By thinning and coppicing, traditional woodland can be re-established. It is a decline of this type of practice that has led to the loss of some of our most attractive woodland and the wildlife that relies upon it.