Are you Ready to Burn?
Getting to know the Ready to Burn scheme
Woodsure, the UK’s only wood fuel quality assurance scheme, has launched a Ready to Burn initiative to help homeowners look after their stoves and improve air quality.
Air quality and wood fuel have become a hot topic and stove owners are being asked to think about the impact of burning poor quality firewood has on the environment. A stove is only as good as the wood it burns and so the Ready to Burn stamp of approval will reassure those who purchase firewood/briquettes with its logo that they are dry enough and immediately ready to burn.
Why is it important? Avoid wet wood!
Burning wet wood is inefficient as it demands a lot of heat to boil off the water before the appliance can give out the proper level of heat to the room, hot water or heating systems. In turn, this creates a lot of smoke which damages the chimney and blackens the appliance and contributes to air pollution. Dry wood that has been properly sourced and seasoned means it produces fewer particulates, more heat efficiency and less maintenance – chimneys are less likely to block and will remain easier to sweep.
While stove manufacturers continue to develop new and enhanced products to improve efficiency and clean-burning, it is the critical issue of wood fuel that plays the biggest role in the air quality solution across existing and new appliances.
Today, modern heating appliances are highly engineered, efficient pieces of technology that do a fantastic job – but they can only do so much without quality wood fuel!
Think about it, if you bought a super clean energy-efficient car, would you choose to fill it with a fuel that you were unsure of? It’s true that modern heating appliances are not as complex as car engines, but the same principles apply. Poor quality wood fuel leads to smoke and a poor fuel economy.
The government-backed Ready to Burn scheme is compliant with EU timber regulations and will set a benchmark for logs and other wood fuels in the UK to help with identifying wood that has been carefully chosen and ready to burn.
Specifics and requirements for the scheme
The ‘Ready to Burn’ initiative is for wood log producers, having a distinct certification category for dry firewood logs where they are able to demonstrate through audit and fuel testing that wood fuel they sell as ‘Ready to Burn’ is:
- Labelled as ‘Ready to Burn’
- Is less than 20% moisture content
- There is a point of sale information, labelling and support
- Where appropriate provides retailers with information on how to effectively store and keep the firewood in good condition
Making this dry fuel available to consumers in a way that they can recognise it is ready to burn and differentiate it from wet wood, will significantly increase the sale of dry wood whilst at the same time educating consumers on the benefits.
The principle of the Woodsure scheme is that raw materials, the collection of trees and forestry thinning or post timber processing is legally sourced, processed to achieve the size and moisture characteristics and made available to the end consumer with clear identification.
The scheme has the backing of HETAS, the Stove Industry Alliance and producers of pre-packed wood fuel. It is proposed a governance body will be set up to oversee the scheme.
The Woodsure team will be available on the HETAS stand throughout the Hearth & Home exhibition to speak to anyone interested in the ‘Ready to Burn’ initiative and we will keep you informed on progress over the coming months.