Why is wood smoke an issue?

Smoke from wood heaters and open fireplaces is a significant source of air pollution in Victoria during autumn and winter months. When wood is burned, very small particles and gases are released into the atmosphere. These particles and gases are air pollutants.

This pollution can affect air quality and impact on our health and quality of life. Woodsmoke pollution has a demonstrated impact on people's health, especially those who have existing lung or heart conditions such as asthma or angina.

Wood smoke can also affect people's ability to enjoy their home and the outdoors. Complaints about wood smoke are among the most common complaints received by local government and EPA during winter.

Do you burn wood for heat?

Use of wood heaters and fireplaces continues to be a valued source of heating for many people. For some Victorian households, it is the only feasible form of heating.

If you use a wood heater, the most significant thing you can do to reduce pollution is to operate it correctly. A correctly operated wood heater will produce significantly less pollution than one poorly operated. It will also heat your home better and give you more value for money from the fuel you use. Many of the air pollution problems associated with wood heating can be prevented or minimised by following a number of simple steps.


Page last updated on 22 Feb 2016