Good air quality is fundamental to our wellbeing.
The presence of contaminants in the air can have adverse health and nuisance effects on people, property and the environment.
Small particles of pollution in the air come from:
People with pre-existing respiratory and heart conditions, diabetes, the young, and older people are particularly vulnerable to air pollution. These tiny airborne particles of pollution, known as particulate matter (PM10 and PM2.5) can cause a range of health effects such as:
Air pollution can also affect our day to day activities and quality of life. It can be a hazard or nuisance by:
Read more about air quality(external link) on the Ministry for the Environment website.
The main air quality issue in our district is winter time smog due to wood burning.
Wood burners used for home heating and outdoor fires associated with the burning of garden waste and horticultural practices contribute to this air pollution. The calm, clear and cold winter days don’t allow smoke to rise and disperse. Instead, the smoke sits low to the ground and the air pollution can cause significant negative health and nuisance effects.
Applying good practices when burning wood can significantly reduce the amount of smoke produced, ensure more efficient burning and, in the case of home heating, is more cost effective.