Air district discourages burning on Christmas but doesn’t issue a ban

Does anybody remember the KOFY-TV 20 yule log video. On Christmas Eve, TV 20 would show a video of a fireplace for people who didn't have fireplaces. The program lasted several hours every Christmas Eve. This is a screen grab from that video.

The Bay Area Air Quality Management District is asking the region’s residents to not burn wood during the Christmas holiday but is not issuing Spare the Air alerts that would ban it.

The district, which oversees air quality in the nine-county Bay Area, issued the wood-burning bans via Spare the Air alerts on days earlier this week, but said the air quality will be better Friday during the Christmas holiday.

Nevertheless, the burning of wood in fireplaces, woodstoves and fire pits can cause significant localized pollution, so the air district is strongly discouraging it.

“After unprecedented levels of wildfire smoke and increasing Covid-19 health concerns this year, it’s important that the public not burn wood so we can all enjoy clean air and have a healthy holiday season,” air district executive officer Jack Broadbent said in a statement.

The air district is also reminding residents that it is illegal to burn wrapping paper, which often includes synthetic inks and other chemicals, as well as burning other trash or paper. — Bay City News


  1. Why is wood burning even allowed in residential areas? Smoke from wood burning is highly toxic and hazardous to our health. We are often subject to wood burning right in our neighborhood from fireplaces, barbecues, fire pits, etc. Children and the elderly are most at risk but wood smoke is hazardous to the health of everyone. Here’s the basic rule of thumb: If ou can smell wood smoke, you’re breathing pollution that is detrimental to your health. Closing your windows won’t help as the fine particles infiltrate even the most well-insulated homes. Ban wood burning now!

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