New environmental rating scheme: clearSkies ahead for log burners
Have you always dreamt about owning your own log burner, but worry about the environmental impact? This is certainly an important consideration when looking to buy a new stove and there are a number of legitimate concerns, especially if you live in an urban area.
The good news though is that installing a new log burner isn’t incompatible with limiting your environmental impact. With the right technology, log burners can be one of the most sustainable ways to heat your home. And buying an environmentally-friendly log burner doesn’t need to cost the earth!
Here are some important pointers to consider when choosing a new stove. These should ensure you limit your environmental impact and don’t fall foul of the new ecodesign regulations, that are set to hit the market in 2022.
A carbon neutral option?
In theory, log burners should be a carbon neutral way to heat your home. By using a log burner, you’re relying on a sustainable resource, rather than energy generated from burning fossil fuels. The carbon released from burning wood is recaptured by new trees grown to replace those felled. So, as long as you are sourcing your wood from local suppliers, you shouldn’t be producing any additional carbon emissions.
Where there’s fire, there’s smoke
However, there are still some serious environmental issues associated with log burners due to their high emissions. One of the main worries people have when buying a stove is the amount of smoke it may produce. No one wants a fireplace huffing out pollution in their front room and heavy smoke emissions can contribute to climate change and cause serious breathing problems. Air quality in UK towns and cities is at a critical point, and the particulates produced by log burning stoves can add to these dangerous levels in polluted areas.
In order to tackle the problem of air pollution, DEFRA has introduced a new Clean Air Strategy which aims to improve air quality and reduce emissions, in particular PM2.5 particulates from sources including; transport, industry, farming and most importantly for us, home. This will include measures such as prohibiting the sale of the most polluting fuels and ensuring that only the cleanest burning stoves are available for sale by 2022. Luckily for consumers and the environment, the UK stove industry has for some time been responding to these changes and improved or introduced stoves that meet or exceed the new 2022 Ecodesign requirements.
Seeing through the smoke
The new EcoDesign regulations, which come into play in the UK in 2022, look to address these environmental problems, making it illegal to manufacture and sell new stoves that don’t meet the specified ecological requirements. The regulations specify a minimum criteria for appliances to achieve in test conditions. The criteria relate to the maximum emission levels of particulate matter, carbon dioxide, organic gaseous compounds and nitrogen oxide, as well as an appliance’s minimum energy efficiency.
Future proof your fireplace with clearSkies certification
Going further than Government legislation and the Ecodesign 2022 specification, many stove manufacturers are looking beyond 2022 and want to improve performance and efficiency. You to, can take further steps to limit your environmental impact by looking out for the clearSkies rating, which confirms an appliance has been independently certified and meets or exceeds Ecodesign regulations.
The ClearSkies scheme is a new initiative pioneered by the UK stove industry to improve on the Ecodesign specifications. On top of meeting the Ecodesign regulations, all clearSkies stoves at level 3 and above have been verified as meeting DEFRA requirements and can therefore be used in Smoke Control Zones. Ecodesign stoves are already very efficient and produce low emissions but stoves with a higher clearSkies rating are the future, providing improvements of up to 30% on emissions.
At Ignite Stoves, we’re working to limit the environmental impact of our stoves and most of the log burners in our range are clearSkies rated. For example, the popular Charnwood Aire Woodburning Stove and the Phoenix Firegem Eco both have a level 5 rating, along with a large number of the other log burners we offer.
If you want to chat about how to improve reduce the emissions from your fireplace, or want any more information about the new ecodesign regulations and how these changes might apply to you, feel free to pop by our showroom. Or give us a call and we’ll help you find your lean, green wood burning machine.