Posted by: Matthew | July 6, 2013

Kamloops Physicians for a Healthy Environment

Kamloops is a city in British Columbia, Canada that suffers from shit house air quality from two sources – a pulp mill and domestic wood burning.

You should see what the local doctors think about woodsmoke pollution. Their page on the health consequences of wood smoke should be essential reading for any dickhead who thinks it is okay to burn wood.


And the shareholders of this pulpmill should be imprisoned for the rest of their lives. How dare anyone do that to a community. That is murder.

Interestingly the City of Kamloops has banned all outdoor wood burners because they are seen as too polluting. (They are of course and should be banned everywhere) and yet they let a pulp mill burn waste like that. All the while saying there isn’t a problem with woodsmoke because it falls under the limits when averaged over a year. (Source) which just goes to show that averaging is a handy way to hide peak events and that the limits are set way, way too high. That document from the City of Kamloops also says that although the perception of the smoke is that it is industrial in origin, most pollution is vehicle emissions and point source burning of wood. They’re probably wrong about the vehicle emissions, because although they are a source, it is dwarfed in magnitude by the smoke of woodburners.

Visit Kamloops and the rest of the Okanagan Valley? No thanks, it looks too polluted.

Posted by: Matthew | March 25, 2013

Fluecube product review

Because of the way search engine algorithm works I need more links to this page about a very bad product.

Fluecube – the magic cowl.

Yes this blog is now defunct. Go to for more posts about the dangers of woodsmoke pollution.

Posted by: Matthew | November 14, 2012

The Fireplace Delusion

Sam Harris has written a great piece called “The Fireplace Delusion“.

From it:

“The unhappy truth about burning wood has been scientifically established to a moral certainty: That nice, cozy fire in your fireplace is bad for you. It is bad for your children. It is bad for your neighbors and their children. Burning wood is also completely unnecessary, because in the developed world we invariably have better and cleaner alternatives for heating our homes. If you are burning wood in the United States, Europe, Australia, or any other developed nation, you are most likely doing so recreationally—and the persistence of this habit is a major source of air pollution in cities throughout the world. In fact, wood smoke often contributes more harmful particulates to urban air than any other source.”

So are you deluded, or are you educated?

Ignorance is no excuse. Don’t burn.

Posted by: Matthew | October 30, 2012

More posts you may have missed on Clean Air NZ

Here’s some recent posts from my Clean Air New Zealand site:

South Waikato know they have to change, but are getting it all wrong

Why the PM10 standards need tightening

Richmond, Tasman is polluted

Masterton is polluted

And of course it’s worth taking in a wider perspective:

From the Dom Post is an opinion piece from Philip Pattemore, Associate Professor of Paediatrics, at Otago University, Christchurch, Addiction to tobacco tax erodes smokefree policies

“Effects on children include loss of life in the womb or through cot death, premature birth, lung disease, infections in the ears, nose, throat and lungs, increased rates and severity of asthma, and many other effects on health and learning. My workload as a respiratory paediatrician could be cut by up to 30 per cent if no child was exposed to tobacco smoke.”

I should ask him if he could cut his work hours even more if children weren’t exposed to woodsmoke.

and remember:

Posted by: Matthew | September 9, 2012

Educating Ignorami

Posted by: Matthew | July 10, 2012

Posts you may have missed on Clean Air NZ

I’ve been busy at my new Clean Air NZ blog. Here’s a taste of what the first few posts have been:

Heat Pumps are the best way to heat your home

Woodburners banned in new Canberra suburbs

Arrowtown and Alexandra are Polluted

Smokers pollute the air on the streets

1.5 million people die annually due to woodsmoke

Hearthside Hazards

What’s in woodsmoke?

Invercargill is polluted

What is the real figure of public distaste to woodsmoke?

Posted by: Matthew | July 9, 2012

1.5 million people per year die of woodsmoke deaths


It’s mostly in the developing world, and mostly caused by cooking fires, and is a burden borne largely by women who do the cooking. The reality is that particulates from wood smoke are particularly deadly. It’s not something that you want to be chronically or acutely exposed to.

Posted by: Matthew | July 3, 2012

After a long hiatus I have decided to discontinue the Clean Air Society of the Kapiti Coast. Instead I am going countrywide, and writing a new blog called Clean Air NZ.

If any of my subscribers are still interested (except for the freak who thinks a magic cowl stops air pollution) you can subscribe to it too.

Posted by: Matthew | June 14, 2012

Diesel particulates like wood smoke are carcinogenic

From Australia’s ABC News WHO confirms diesel fumes carcinogenic.

Or how about living near a coal powered powerstation?

And here’s a graph of sources of soot in our environment. Makes those signs saying “Macrocarpa firewood” seem like a crime against humanity doesn’t it? In my opinion everything pellet stove or filthier should be controlled. There’s no justification for a pellet stove. A pellet stove located close to your home can be too filthy, especially if it burns 24/7 all year to supply someone with hot water, especially when there are solar and gas and electric hot water systems available.

Just as a car without a catalytic converter shouldn’t be allowed on the road.

Diesel trucks and buses should be running on battery or compressed natural gas.

Rural burnoffs if shown on the graph would be completely off the scale.

We definitely need laws that reflect the reality of the situation shown in the graph.


Posted by: Matthew | April 29, 2012

Yeah why would we bother?

There’s hardly any reason to take a position as dumb as Pascal’s Wager to take action on combating excessive emissions of greenhouse gases. No one with their head in the sand should be allowed to be anywhere near policy.

As so is it with “deniers” of anthropogenic climate change, so to is it with the “deniers” of the hazards of woodsmoke.

Clean air, healthy children, and livable cities, yeah, who needs any shit like that?

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