Default Coal and Wet Wood to be Banned from Sale

By Gary Cutlack on at

The planned ban on the most polluting types of home combustibles is actually going ahead, with the government set to outlaw the sale and burning of house coal and wet wood from 2021 or thereabouts.

House coal and wet woods are the worst producers of particulate matter, people with knowledge of the matter keep on explaining like we care, so it's these that are to be ended by new laws coming via the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. Wet wood is the crappy stuff sold on the cheap to people who don't know any better, as it usually means it hasn't been seasoned – old man terminology for dried out so the sap is gone – and therefore tars up the chimney and makes your woodburner window go all black. House coal is the lumpy old rocky stuff. Both stink out the neighbours.

And both are to be phased out between next year and 2023, giving owners of big stashes a chance to burn their loads, and retailers the opportunity to get rid and switch over to one of the many alternatives, like proper seasoned wood, those logs you make by squishing together mashed up newspaper, chopped up abandoned furniture, and pellets made from old car tyres blended with the fat of the dead. And peat, if you can get it and don't care because of how cold it is and you're all out of nice logs.

Environment secretary George Eustice threw another compressed woodchip alternative log you get six of for £18.99 from Homebase on his stunt fire that someone else lit for him, and said: "Cosy open fires and wood-burning stoves are at the heart of many homes up and down the country, but the use of certain fuels means that they are also the biggest source of the most harmful pollutant that is affecting people in the UK. By moving towards the use of cleaner fuels such as dry wood we can all play a part in improving the health of millions of people." [GOV via BBC]