Monday, June 04, 2007

Banning Fireplaces... What Will Happen to Santa

I have lived in CA since 1952 and have seen a lot of changes over the years to clean up the air in our communities. I believe in being prudent with our natural resources. I watch the amount of water I use and do my best not to be wasteful. I try to keep an eye on my electrical consumption and have installed all new energy efficient appliances. I use the funny looking light bulbs and have seen my electrical bill decrease. I support research into alternative energy sources to decrease our dependency on oil.

But I'm going to have to draw the line at taking away my fireplace. Now at the moment I have a gas fireplace which is OK but it's just not the same as a wood burning fireplace. I don't care how evolved gas fireplaces have become they just don't have the same feel as a real fireplace.

On June 1, 2007 the Southern California air regulators unanimously approved a comprehensive clean air plan that appears to include some heavy restrictions on using a home fireplace.

The plan includes the possibility of banning wood burning fireplaces in new homes in Los Angelers, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino Counties. The plan also includes a plan to ban wood burning fires in these counties during certain days in the winter and may also force homeowners in the Inland Empire to close off or remove fireplaces and wood stoves or install expensive pollution control devices when a property is sold.

Now I might be a bit more sympathetic if stopping me from using a fireplace was going to really improve the air quality.. on a normal day there is approximately 192 tons of bad stuff in the air. Taking away our fireplaces would maybe reduce that amount by 7 tons which is pretty minimal. Cars, trucks and many businesses emit far more junk into the air but they aren't talking about banning them.

I'm thinking that getting tough about emissions from other sources would have a far greater effect on our air quality then removing fireplaces... and besides if they follow through with this silly notion.. how will Santa get in to bring me my presents at Christmas.

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