You want to heat your house without buying from ActewAGL? Wood fired heating banned in Molonglo development

johnboy 9 July 2012 51

fire

Simon Corbell has announced there will be no wood fired heating in the new Suburbs of Molonglo (Wright excepted) on air quality grounds:

“While the 2011 Air Quality Report highlights the excellent air quality in Canberra, annual monitoring has identified that smoke from domestic wood heaters is the most significant source of air pollution in Canberra,” Mr Corbell said.

“This year?s report shows four breaches of the reporting standard, which occurred in the months of May and July 2011, during the colder months because of wood heater emissions.

“The ACT Government monitors air quality in order to ensure that the health and wellbeing of Canberrans is maintained and the results of the air monitoring are published each year via an annual report.

“Following a planning study of the air quality impacts associated with the development of the Molonglo Valley, wood heaters will be prohibited in this area, excluding the suburb of Wright. Similar restrictions are already successfully operating in Dunlop and East O?Malley.”

Greens are happy, ActewAGL is happy, who cares about anything else?

[Pictured is the blazing fire at The Wolf’s Lair, which since we switched from “teepee” lighting to “log cabin” style produces almost no smoke at all]


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51 Responses to You want to heat your house without buying from ActewAGL? Wood fired heating banned in Molonglo development
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cranky cranky 6:17 pm 12 Jul 12

Even easier.

Gov inspectors located on all roads entering the ACT, checking the quality of all firewood being imported. 🙂

VYBerlinaV8_is_back VYBerlinaV8_is_back 4:45 pm 12 Jul 12

Solidarity said :

So just replace your wood fired heater with a cat fired heater.

2 birds, 1 stone.

The problem with this idea is that you need quite a few mice to use as kindling, unless of course you just keep it running on low heat continuously.

Solidarity Solidarity 3:44 pm 12 Jul 12

So just replace your wood fired heater with a cat fired heater.

2 birds, 1 stone.

MissChief MissChief 1:58 pm 12 Jul 12

Just don’t live there! Let the people who hate cats, hate wood fired heating and who love to live in ticky tacky suburbs very VERY close to their neighbours live there.

There’s still plenty of freedom in other suburbs and often with more bang for your buck.

pirate_taco pirate_taco 11:28 am 12 Jul 12

johnboy said :

Oh happy day when we need to apply for permits. There’s a whole world of bureaucratic possibility in the implementation of a permit scheme!

I agree that needing to ask for permission isn’t ideal, and Amanda Bresnan appears to agree also.
I would also hope that should wood fired heater standards come up to a level that the Greens support, that the covenants or legislation that is banning wood fired heaters without a permit in new developments be allowed to lapse.

Mysteryman Mysteryman 11:23 am 12 Jul 12

c_c said :

wildturkeycanoe said :

Aaah, wood heating. I’ve been thinking about putting it into my house. We had natural gas, it FAILED. Have 2 split systems running 24/7 at the moment and we just cope on the coldest nights under warm blankets. Never, ever, ever [ and I mean ever ] going back to in slab heating due to the cost. Are there any real alternatives to wood that can actually heat a house properly in these conditions??
BTW, we are in a 3 year old 5 star energy rated house. Does that mean you have to be cold in winter in order to save the planet??

Literally dozens of alternatives to wood, all of which are better for the environment, are safer and won’t f**k up your neighbours who have Asthma.

Using wood heaters if your home has them just for their charm on occasion, fine. But using them as a main source is caveman stuff for which you should have to pay higher rates.

I too would like to hear these alternatives. List them.

johnboy johnboy 10:40 am 12 Jul 12

pirate_taco said :

Amanda Bresnan has responded to me with the clarification that Molonglo residents will be able to apply for a permit to have a wood heater provided that it meets emissions standards.
She informs me that the ACT Greens want to introduce emissions standards so that this type of permit seeking will not be required in the future.
I am still waiting to see the relevant legislation that has all these details to confirm for myself.

I think wood fires are fantastic things, but concede that in built up areas work needs to be done to ensure that the smoke impact on others isn’t too great.

Oh happy day when we need to apply for permits. There’s a whole world of bureaucratic possibility in the implementation of a permit scheme!

pirate_taco pirate_taco 10:37 am 12 Jul 12

Amanda Bresnan has responded to me with the clarification that Molonglo residents will be able to apply for a permit to have a wood heater provided that it meets emissions standards.
She informs me that the ACT Greens want to introduce emissions standards so that this type of permit seeking will not be required in the future.
I am still waiting to see the relevant legislation that has all these details to confirm for myself.

I think wood fires are fantastic things, but concede that in built up areas work needs to be done to ensure that the smoke impact on others isn’t too great.

Thumper Thumper 10:29 am 12 Jul 12

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd said :

c_c said :

wildturkeycanoe said :

Aaah, wood heating. I’ve been thinking about putting it into my house. We had natural gas, it FAILED. Have 2 split systems running 24/7 at the moment and we just cope on the coldest nights under warm blankets. Never, ever, ever [ and I mean ever ] going back to in slab heating due to the cost. Are there any real alternatives to wood that can actually heat a house properly in these conditions??
BTW, we are in a 3 year old 5 star energy rated house. Does that mean you have to be cold in winter in order to save the planet??

Literally dozens of alternatives to wood, all of which are better for the environment, are safer and won’t f**k up your neighbours who have Asthma.

Using wood heaters if your home has them just for their charm on occasion, fine. But using them as a main source is caveman stuff for which you should have to pay higher rates.

Can you list these alternatives?

All 24 will suffice.

Given that apparently, there are literally dozens.

Diggety Diggety 10:17 am 12 Jul 12

LSWCHP said :

I finish most evenings toasting myself in a comfy chair by my crackling fire on these freezing winters nights. The dog will be at my feet or perhaps on my lap. My glass may contain a Rutherglen Muscat, or an Islay malt, or even some sweet American bourbon. My wife is usually reading on the sofa. When the fire gets a bit low, I nudge one of my fine young sons to go outside and bring in another armful from the pile of wood that I’ve recently split.

There’s nothing like a carefully tended wood fire. If you have such a thing, treasure it.

+1

Our TV was made redundant, and quality family time soon flourished after installing a wood heater.

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd 6:48 am 12 Jul 12

c_c said :

wildturkeycanoe said :

Aaah, wood heating. I’ve been thinking about putting it into my house. We had natural gas, it FAILED. Have 2 split systems running 24/7 at the moment and we just cope on the coldest nights under warm blankets. Never, ever, ever [ and I mean ever ] going back to in slab heating due to the cost. Are there any real alternatives to wood that can actually heat a house properly in these conditions??
BTW, we are in a 3 year old 5 star energy rated house. Does that mean you have to be cold in winter in order to save the planet??

Literally dozens of alternatives to wood, all of which are better for the environment, are safer and won’t f**k up your neighbours who have Asthma.

Using wood heaters if your home has them just for their charm on occasion, fine. But using them as a main source is caveman stuff for which you should have to pay higher rates.

Can you list these alternatives?

caf caf 11:02 pm 11 Jul 12

johnboy said :

well, it seems likely this is a long term push to eventual banning.

A bit like what they’re doing with cats.

Start by stopping anyone building new having them, then over time the banned portion has become large, perhaps a majority, and the remaining minority can be relatively painlessly banned as an odd exemption to the norm.

Take them a hundred years at current rates though, so maybe not such a big thing to get worried about.

Well, I think I’ll wait for this wedge to get a bit wider before I man the barricades.

LSWCHP LSWCHP 10:36 pm 11 Jul 12

I finish most evenings toasting myself in a comfy chair by my crackling fire on these freezing winters nights. The dog will be at my feet or perhaps on my lap. My glass may contain a Rutherglen Muscat, or an Islay malt, or even some sweet American bourbon. My wife is usually reading on the sofa. When the fire gets a bit low, I nudge one of my fine young sons to go outside and bring in another armful from the pile of wood that I’ve recently split.

There’s nothing like a carefully tended wood fire. If you have such a thing, treasure it.

c_c c_c 9:08 pm 11 Jul 12

wildturkeycanoe said :

Aaah, wood heating. I’ve been thinking about putting it into my house. We had natural gas, it FAILED. Have 2 split systems running 24/7 at the moment and we just cope on the coldest nights under warm blankets. Never, ever, ever [ and I mean ever ] going back to in slab heating due to the cost. Are there any real alternatives to wood that can actually heat a house properly in these conditions??
BTW, we are in a 3 year old 5 star energy rated house. Does that mean you have to be cold in winter in order to save the planet??

Literally dozens of alternatives to wood, all of which are better for the environment, are safer and won’t f**k up your neighbours who have Asthma.

Using wood heaters if your home has them just for their charm on occasion, fine. But using them as a main source is caveman stuff for which you should have to pay higher rates.

Thumper Thumper 8:48 pm 11 Jul 12

johnboy said :

well, it seems likely this is a long term push to eventual banning.

A bit like what they’re doing with cats.

Start by stopping anyone building new having them, then over time the banned portion has become large, perhaps a majority, and the remaining minority can be relatively painlessly banned as an odd exemption to the norm.

Take them a hundred years at current rates though, so maybe not such a big thing to get worried about.

Push it along a bit by legislating that no new house owner can have wood heating and it rapidly sneaks into the suburbs.

gazket gazket 8:39 pm 11 Jul 12

but it’s OK for Bob Brown Clown to have a wood fire place.
Labour Greens motto = do as I say, not as I do.

I-filed I-filed 8:38 pm 11 Jul 12

Burning firewood was banned in London ages ago. However, if you walk around Hampstead Garden Suburb, there are new woodpiles everywhere. One law for the rich … I suspect that the burghers of Forrest would continue to openly burn their fires regardless of any eventual ban, along with the peasant kindling-gatherers on Mt Majura …

wildturkeycanoe wildturkeycanoe 8:24 pm 11 Jul 12

Genie said :

wildturkeycanoe said :

Aaah, wood heating. I’ve been thinking about putting it into my house. We had natural gas, it FAILED. Have 2 split systems running 24/7 at the moment and we just cope on the coldest nights under warm blankets. Never, ever, ever [ and I mean ever ] going back to in slab heating due to the cost. Are there any real alternatives to wood that can actually heat a house properly in these conditions??
BTW, we are in a 3 year old 5 star energy rated house. Does that mean you have to be cold in winter in order to save the planet??

You’re in a 5* energy rated house and you’re cold ?
I live in a 0.5* property, pretty sure the place isn’t even insulated and the central heating set to 18 and a light blanket keeps me toasty warm

Central heating – and how much does that chew in power/gas/alternative energy source per quarter? I am stating that with the choices available to me in my particular home, I can barely get enough heat to feel comfortable without having to spend an enormous amount. Wood fires can provide a relatively cheap source of heat and also a very pleasant heat as opposed to a smelly and damp producing kind [gas] or a costly and environmentally unfriendly kind [electric].
5* energy rating is probably only because of the solar boosted HWS, northern aspect, rainwater tanks etc. Nothing to do with keeping the energy consumption down. Especially when the original gas heater was only 2 and 1/2 star rating.

caf caf 5:48 pm 11 Jul 12

I don’t get the outrage.

This only applies to a bunch of new suburbs in Molonglo – if you want a wood heater, don’t buy there! This way there’s choice – those who want to leave in a suburb free from wood smoke can do so, and for everyone else, there’s the rest of the city to choose from.

    johnboy johnboy 5:50 pm 11 Jul 12

    well, it seems likely this is a long term push to eventual banning.

    A bit like what they’re doing with cats.

    Start by stopping anyone building new having them, then over time the banned portion has become large, perhaps a majority, and the remaining minority can be relatively painlessly banned as an odd exemption to the norm.

    Take them a hundred years at current rates though, so maybe not such a big thing to get worried about.

pirate_taco pirate_taco 4:54 pm 11 Jul 12

I note that Amanda Bresnan is claiming on Twitter that the ACT Greens do not want to ban wood fired heating, and linked to a blog post where they talked about improving the types of wood heaters being installed.

She has not responded to why the ACT Greens (As part of the ACT Government) have actioned their desire to not ban wood fired heaters by banning wood fired heaters.

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