Subscribe to our free weekly newsletter
Send news

News tags

mental health  physical activity  earthquake  vacancies  families  public health  children  funding  poverty  health determinants  social  Community development  planning  employment  healthy cities  volunteers  newsletter  youth  volunteering  nutrition  employment opportunity  housing  alcohol and drugs  maori  community engagement  rebuilding  wellbeing  disabilities  Lectures  counselling  Training  earthquake recovery  sustainability  event  community gardens  Community  seminar  Awards  stress  Community Groups  mens health  research  arts  smokefree  culture  men  exercise  migrants  community event  education  environment  resilience  human rights  health  medical  business  sport  conferences  survey  mental wellbeing  Courses  obesity  elderly  support group  environmental health  healthy food  health promotion  violence  pacific health  resources  rebuild  women  race relations  meeting  gardens  workshop  services  leadership  forum  water  disabled  repair  transport  prevention  pacific  dance  fundraising  asian health  sexual health  inequality  cancer  support  disasters  development  mindfulness  dementia  presentation  collaboration  health in all policies  data analysis  recovery  smoking  law  drugs and alcohol  technology  safety  cycling  Sleep  policy  parenting  media  hearing  walking  land  neighbours  social justice  qualification  resilient cities  information  community connection  consultation  oral health  bullying  depression  youth empowerment  young people  activities  non-profit  charity  harm  NURSES  addiction  disease  Communication  alcohol  symposium  submission  anxiety  accessibility  Relationships  eating  economics  Advocacy  eLearning  falls  parking  energy  efficiency  heating  insulation  advice  Eating Disorders  abuse  waste  Matariki  webinar  diabetes  workplace  Film  Climate Change  solutions  urban  management  economy  plan  restoration  Report  Vulnerability  welfare  parks  learning  awareness  emergencies  legislation  injury prevention  reading  Meeting Room  conservation  language  refugees  recreation  built environment  data  venue  urban design  Food  older people  finances  suicide  heritage  gender  recycling  breastfeeding  public  identity  Nursing  submissions  Rainbow  biodiversity  campaign  promotion  Gut Health  diversity  therapy  older adults  sexuality  computing  pollution  School Holidays  Arts Therapy  providers  gambling  Maori health  Cervical cancer  screening  trauma  autism  Governance  treaty of waitangi  care  mentoring  pets  relaxation  Professional Development  pornography  exhibition  history  discrimination  vaping  equity  lockdown  grief  rural  hygiene  participation  tourism  summer  intervention  warning  podcast  science  petition  swimming  roadworks  traffic  wildlife  beaches  pools  immunisation  vaccination  brain  preparation  open day  market  evaluation  noise  music  property  testing  crafts  CALD  cultural diversity  camping  creativity  child health  tamariki  climate action  refugee  migrant  community events  road safety  library  Hornby  skills  placemaking  regenerative communities  journey  reflection  regional council  councillors  water management  emergency management  retirement  stress management  Christmas  family  festival  alcohol harm  waterways  planting  health protection  legionnaire's disease  hepatitis  heatwaves  river beds  water safety  fishing  gardening  workshops  stormwater  biosecurity  volunteer  plant and animal pest management  politics  faith  crime  drugs  pregnancy  native birds  Waimakariri  water quality  schools  health professionals  heart disease  kura  school  ethical issues  rangatahi  Linwood  running  donations  whanau  financial pressures  online  health professional  flooding  conflict  peace  winter 

Help is here for those with expired wood burners

Wednesday, September 6, 2023   Posted in: Signatory Notice Board By: Administrator With tags: funding, heating, pollution

Environment Canterbury media release: 6th September 2023

With more than 12,000 expired wood burners in Canterbury homes, and thousands more due to expire in the coming years, Environment Canterbury is urging homeowners to check their burner.

September 7th is International Clean Air Day. It was launched by the United Nations General Assembly in 2019, and is a chance to champion clean air projects and raise interest in improving air quality.

So, let’s review the state of play in Canterbury when it comes to air quality, and how Cantabrians view home heating.

More than 10,000 expired burners in Christchurch

There are an estimated 12,400 non-compliant wood burners across the region, with over 10,000 of those in the Christchurch airshed. Thousands more domestic burners will become non-compliant by the end of 2027.

Find out more about the Clean Air Zones in Canterbury.

Under the Canterbury Air Regional Plan, low-emission burners cannot be used 20 years after the building consent for the burner is issued, or 15 years after installation in the Timaru clean air zone.

There is a substantial body of evidence showing that breathing particulate matter is harmful. PM10 and finer particles such as PM2.5 can get deep in our lungs and cause health issues - particularly for vulnerable members of society like children, older people and those with pre-existing respiratory illnesses.

The health consequences of poor air quality

Our 2020 Air Quality Snapshot Report [3.6MB PDF] showed the main sources of PM10 particles in Christchurch in winter were:

  • Home heating (67 percent);
  • Industry (19 percent); and
  • Vehicles (14 percent).

A report in 2016 showed that Canterbury’s air pollution from domestic fires caused:

  • 206 premature deaths across adults;
  • 384 cardiovascular hospitalisations across all ages; and
  • 249 respiratory hospitalisations across all ages.

The good news: Help is here!

The eligibility criteria for insulation grants was expanded In August 2023, meaning they're available to around 58,000 more homeowners around the country. You may be eligible for 80 to 90 percent off the cost of installing insulation in your home.

You may also be eligible for funding for upgrading your home heating from the Warmer Kiwi Homes programme - depending on where you live (social deprivation index).

We’re on the right track, says our principal implementation advisor for air Paul Hopwood. Monitoring shows decreases in high air pollution days across the board in Canterbury over the past 10 years, with the exception of the Washdyke monitoring station.

"We’re having far fewer high-pollution days across the region, which is fantastic to see. There was a time there where Timaru and Christchurch were having almost ten times the number of high-pollution days they are now. 

"But the job is not done. We really want those numbers to reduce further, and the way we are going to achieve that is by encouraging those with expiring or expired wood burners to replace them with either a heat pump or ultra-low emission burner (ULEB) and by using dry firewood with good burning technique," he said. 

Financial assistance is available, including our subsidy available to community services card holders - covering the full cost of replacing expired and expiring burners with a heat pump or ULEB. Our subsidies are available through Brightr or EnergySmart, depending on where you live.

Find out about financial assistance and subsidies from ECan to upgrade your expired burner.

How you can help

There is an easy way to see if you’re helping or hindering air quality in Canterbury.
Search for your address in the Solid Fuel Burner Database to check when your burner is due to expire. If the information there is wrong, please contact Advisory Services to correct this.

Check if you live in one of our eight clean air zones across the region. They cover Christchurch, Rangiora, Kaiapoi, Ashburton, Timaru, Geraldine, Waimate, and Washdyke.  

To reduce home heating emissions, low-emission burners are being phased out in five zones: Christchurch, Rangiora, Kaiapoi, Ashburton, and Timaru.

We all want clean air to breathe in Waitaha | Canterbury. You can help improve our region’s air quality by ensuring you keep the following in mind for your domestic fire:

  • Burn dry, seasoned wood.
    Find out about Trusted Good Wood Merchants near you.
  • Get your fire going quickly and keep it burning hot;
  • Don’t damp your fire down over night;
  • Switch to a non-emitting home heating source such as a heat pump;
  • Switch to a pellet fire or ULEB; and
  • Don’t burn treated timber or rubbish.