Wood fire bans important for public wellness

Letter by Cathy Baiton, printed in the Lethbridge Herald – Letters, August 14, 2018 Wildfire smoke has been blanketing much of our province and city. This weekend has been especially smoky and warm. Birds have been noticeably silent. The air has felt heavy and still, and even trees and other plants seem to have less…

The public deserves answers about the BC Lung Association’s involvement in a tainted air scandal

  (Public domain photo)   The newest blog article from the Gabriola Clean Air Society examines further the serious problem of the BC Lung Association’s involvement in (and associated profit from) promoting the sale of harmful smoke-producing products through wood stove exchange and associated pro-wood burning programs.  Wood stove exchanges, which have been a major boon…

The hearth industry’s wood stove-to-wood stove exchanges and false promises about “EPA-certified” wood stoves are smoke-screens

  Wood stove exchange programs have now been going on for nearly three decades. Many people, including probably most elected officials and even many directors and board members of some air quality agencies, have been led to believe that such programs first began as a government-led health initiative. But although the hearth industry has been…

A recent study highlights the fact that wood smoke is partly responsible for a rising number of deaths from lung disease

  “Traditional wood-burning ovens may be behind a surge in lung disease deaths, an expert has claimed. Professor Onno van Schayck, of Maastricht University in the Netherlands, made the claim after reviewing alarming new global data. Global figures showed chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), caused by smoking and pollution, claimed 3.2 million lives in 2015. And…

Which matters more: business interests or public health?

— Reflections on the HPBA’s hiring of a public relations firm that helped the hearth industry to defeat a 2015 wood burning ban Why are so many decision-makers at all levels of government throughout North America so evidently reluctant to do the right thing and implement wood burning bans that are essential for protecting clean air and…

We are entitled to clean air

  Letter by Cathy Baiton, Printed in The Lethbridge Herald – Letters, June 28, 2017 Last evening air pollution kept some residents on/near 13 Street South inside. When someone lights a wood fire in a residential zone (and there are always cleaner, smoke-free, non-wood burning alternatives), that person affects air quality for fellow citizens, often…

Video: Smoke is Smoke

  Programs that involve exchanging old wood burning appliances for new smoke-producing products do not protect clean air; only complete wood burning bans can do that. Wood burning bans are essential for building healthy, vibrant communities. A healthy community is one that protects everyone’s right to breathe healthy, smoke-free air.