If you use a woodburner, make sure your fire is burning brightly and you use dry, untreated firewood.
Good outdoor air quality is fundamental to our well-being.
On average, a person inhales about 14,000 litres of air every day, and the presence of contaminants in this air can adversely affect people’s health. People with pre-existing respiratory and heart conditions, diabetes, the young, and older people are particularly vulnerable.
Tasman communities can have poor air quality in winter and this pollution is measured as excessive amounts of small particles in the air (PM10).
The major cause of this poor air quality is emissions from domestic open fires and enclosed burners.
The way people manage their wood supplies and what they burn plays a significant part in determining how much of these particles are produced.
Read more about air quality on the Ministry for the Environment website.
The following companies are Good Wood suppliers.
|Bay Firewood||Arlun Wells||315 Takaka-
03 525 9560
027 769 6348
|Richmond Wood and Coal||Barry Newport
and Duane Whiting
03 544 6473
|Buyright Firewood||Gordon Evans||
021 127 8957
|Wholesale Firewood||Kylie Stringer||Richmond||
03 546 9595
027 922 9611
When you choose a Good Wood supplier, you're opting for a trusted source of dry firewood that will burn well, helping to keep your home warmer and our air cleaner.
The Tasman District Council and Nelson City Council wish to promote the Good Wood scheme as a way of contributing to better wood burner operation. It is a joint project between the Councils and wood suppliers, who undertake to supply firewood according to best practice and contribute to improving air quality in our districts.
Using Good Wood also means you can be sure that you can operate your wood burner more efficiently, saving you money. Burning dry and seasoned wood gives better heat for cost as well as lower emissions.
Look for the Good Wood tick next time you buy firewood.
Good Wood suppliers have agreed to supply householders with either:
Summer is the best time to buy and store your firewood, so you have dry, seasoned wood ready for next winter.
When ordering seasoned wood from a Good Wood supplier, request that the wood complies with Council’s moisture requirements. Burning firewood with a moisture content of more than 25% is banned in Tasman and Nelson. If it doesn’t meet the requirements, don’t accept the delivery.
A Good Wood supplier will have a moisture meter to measure the moisture content of wood if you wish to confirm that wood being delivered is dry enough for use. Alternatively, you can test by striking two pieces of wood together - dry wood will make a sharp cracking sound. Cracks at the end of the wood are another sign that it is dry.
You can buy green wood in time for it to be seasoned before winter. Wood will take between 4 and 12 months to season. Green wood that has recently been cut or wood that has not been stored properly or for long enough will have a higher moisture content.
It will not meet the Council’s moisture requirements so should not be used for burning. Ensure that any green wood purchased is stored so that the air can circulate freely and is sheltered from rain.
If you choose to purchase firewood from a 'side of the road' source, you may get caught out with a green load. When wood is difficult to burn, it does not produce as much heat as dry wood, it will be extremely smoky, reducing cost effectiveness and will clog your flue with creosote, and become dangerous quite quickly.
If you have cut down a tree, stack it and allow it to season for 12 months before burning. Split wood dries faster.
Cut into suitable sized lengths in a variety of sizes for your wood burner as well. Chunks that are too large will not burn properly, meaning less heat and more smoke.
Cut enough kindling to help with starting your fire.
Store wood in a dry place that is sheltered from rain and stack it loosely off the ground in a criss-cross pattern to let dry air circulate around it.
Timber treated with preservatives such as CCA (copper chrome arsenic treatment) must never be used for firewood. Burning treated wood exposes yourself and your family to its dangerous chemicals and the ash also causes long term issues in the environment.
Arsenic is released into the atmosphere when treated wood is burnt. Significant levels of arsenic has shown up in our wintertime air quality monitoring and this source is from treated timber being used for domestic fires.
Please contact us if you are unsure whether the wood you are intending to use as firewood is treated. Treated wood offcuts should be sent to landfill.
You should also avoid burning painted timber. Some painted timber still has paint that contains lead and the lead will also enter the air you breathe through the smoke.
This helps your fire burn more efficiently. Make sure the flue is insulated, is high enough to let smoke and gases disperse and does not have a 'hat'.
Check your home insulation to keep the warmth in.
Green wood will not burn efficiently, leaving you with a cold house and smoky fire! Striking two pieces of wood together is a good way to check if it is dry enough. Dry wood will give a resonant crack and wet wood will make a dull thud.
Store wood in a dry place and stack it loosely off the ground in a criss-cross pattern to let dry air circulate around it.
Don't bank down your fire overnight. Tests have shown it does not add to the warmth of your home but greatly increases polluting emissions releasing higher levels of organic compounds.
To use your existing solid fuel burner in the most efficient and environmentally friendly way, do not burn any of the following:
Take these items to a Resource Recovery Centre to be disposed of safely either by recycling or safe landfilling.
Burning of such items is prohibited under the following rules:
If your current wood burner is over 10 year old, it may need replacing – modern appliances are far more efficient. Alternatively, you can install clean air heat source (heat pumps, gas fires, electric heaters).
The Tasman Resource Management Plan (TRMP) has rules that apply to the use of home heating appliances. This includes open fires, pot belly and domestic ranges or stoves, wood burners, pellet fires, multi-fuel (coal/wood and waste burning system) or any other similar appliance. Any new wood burners installed in properties up to 2ha must meet the design standards as set out in the TRMP and National Environmental Standards for Air Quality.
There are specific rules that apply to burners in Richmond as they contribute significant air pollution to the airshed during winter. Wood burners may require upgrading to clean burning appliances when a house changes ownership. New houses within the airshed can only install pellet fires, or use clean air heat sources such as heat pumps or electric heaters.
You will also require building consent for the installation of a wood burner.
If you’re thinking of buying a second hand burner, or importing a burner from overseas, be aware that these will also need to meet the design standards in the TRMP and National Environmental Standards for Air Quality. Testing an appliance to confirm compliance can be costly.
Authorised wood burners (including pellet fires) are listed on the Ministry of Environment’s Authorised wood burner list.
All wood burners installed indoors after 1 September 2005, on a property less than 2 hectares anywhere in the District, must comply with the Ministry for the Environment's National Environment Standards for Air Quality (NES).
Emissions must be less than 1.5 g/kg (grams of particulate per kilogram of wood burnt) and have an efficiency of greater than 65 percent.
This guide provides information about the effects of smoke from wood burners and how to reduce them.
The guide explains: