01 Nov

The Future of Wood Burning

Installing an SIA Ecodesign Ready stove can help you be more energy efficient and reduce your carbon footprint and particulate (PM) emissions, says the SIA.

Energy efficiency, carbon reduction and air quality are among the key issues facing us today. SIA Ecodesign Ready stoves assist in meeting these challenges.

Stove owners and those thinking of buying a new wood burning stove can be assured that the Government is not seeking to ban them. Instead, it wants to ensure that consumers use the cleanest stoves and fuel. By doing this as part of its overall air quality plan, the Government expects to meet its air quality targets and benefit from the low CO2 emissions that come from burning wood rather than fossil fuels, like oil and gas.

Air Quality

SIA Ecodesign Ready stoves are designed to reduce PM emissions by burning wood more efficiently and completely.

SIA Ecodesign Ready stoves have been independently tested by approved laboratories to show that they met the emissions and minimum efficiency criteria for Ecodesign. The test results have also been verified by HETAS.

Ecodesign is the European-wide programme to lower emissions and improve efficiency. DEFRA will require all stoves that are sold and installed to meet Ecodesign emission standards in 2022. SIA Ecodesign Ready stoves meet the Ecodesign requirements and are available now.

Burning wood produces PM, but the amount produced depends on how the wood is burned. Independent research conducted by testing body Kiwa on behalf of the SIA has shown that SIA Ecodesign Ready stoves can reduce PM emissions by 90 per cent, compared to an open fire, and by 80 per cent compared to an old stove. The PM emissions limit for Ecodesign is 55 per cent lower than for DEFRA exempt stoves.

Both DEFRA and Mayor of London Sadiq Khan are backing the installation of SIA Ecodesign Ready stoves to reduce emissions from wood burning.

In its Clean Air Strategy, the Government has recognised that all wood burning is not the same and that reductions in PM emissions  can be achieved through the installation of Ecodesign Ready stoves.

Mr Khan showed his support for Ecodesign Ready stoves by sponsoring two adverts in the Evening Standard encouraging Londoners to only burn dry wood and choose a DEFRA exempt stove that is also Ecodesign Ready.

The Government’s Clean Air Strategy recognises that, in addition to using an SIA Ecodesign stove, further reductions in PM emissions can be achieved by burning appropriately dry wood like Ready to Burn logs that have a moisture content below 20 per cent.

The Government has also recognised that maintenance and the way in which householders operate the stove play a significant part in reducing emissions. The National Association of Chimney Sweeps has produced a guide on how to use and maintain stoves, called Burnright.

Installing a wood burning stove can also help you be more energy efficient and reduce your carbon footprint.

Lowering CO2 emissions and improving energy efficiency are key objectives for the UK.  SIA Ecodesign Ready stoves can help households play their part in achieving these objectives.

By replacing an open fire with an SIA Ecodesign Ready stove, you can both increase the efficiency of the heating in your home and reduce your carbon footprint, all without compromising on the cosy focal point that truly makes a house a home. The increased efficiency of a SIA Ecodesign Ready stove will make a noticeable difference to fuel economy and warmth in the house.

Wood is one of the most environmentally friendly fuels that can be used. It is a sustainable renewable energy source which is virtually carbon neutral.

The natural cycle of planting and harvesting trees has created a sustainable process that will provide carbon neutral solid fuel far into the future. CO2 is taken out of the atmosphere by growing trees at the same time as it is released by the combustion of the previous harvest. To reflect this closed loop CO2 cycle, the carbon factor for wood logs in the official software used to measure the energy efficiency of homes (SAP) is only a small fraction of that for electricity, oil and gas.

So be sure to look out for the SIA Ecodesign Ready label when you are buying a stove:

  • The most environmentally-friendly stove available today.
  • Has been independently tested to prove compliance with the Ecodesign Ready criteria.
  • Recommended by DEFRA.

Under current regulations, an SIA Ecodesign Ready stove should also be DEFRA exempt to be installed in a smoke control area.

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