Wet wood ‘Ban’ – Why the Government have got it WRONG

wet wood

The Government have decided to go ahead and ban the sale of wet wood under the volume of 2 cubic meters.  

DEFRA (The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) is bringing in the mandatory certification scheme next year 2021 

The smaller wood manufacturers this certification scheme is going to be delayed until 2022. This is because the government says it realises that smaller producers may struggle to hit the deadline. 

So what does this all mean? 

From now til 2021 – There is NO ban and you can continue buying any wood for your fire or wood-burner. There is NO ban on wood-burners.

From 2021 – Larger manufacturers of wood can only sell ‘Dry’ wood with a moisture content of less than 20% if the volume of wood sold is less than 2 cubic meters. You can still buy sacks of logs from places such as B&Q. There is NO ban on wood-burners 

From 2022 – All wood sold under 2 cubic meters has to be ‘Dry’ a moisture content below 20%. (Paces like B&Q that sell the sacks of wood) There is NO ban on wood-burners.

I mention B&Q because they often leave their sacks of logs outside soaking up all that British rain that we get!

When was the last time you checked the wood you are burning?

If you ask me ‘The Sweep Guy’ I can check the moisture content of your wood, when I come to sweep your chimney.

 

Dry wood
Here’s my thoughts on this 

Have you ever tried to burn wet wood? It gives off no heat and no flames and it’s a nightmare to try and keep alight.  

Where I live there are lots of people selling sacks of logs, bags of kindling – are all these driveway sellers going to sign up to this scheme? 

It’s likely these ‘driveway’ sellers will just stop selling, even if their wood is dry (or maybe they will go underground & start selling on Ebay, Facebook etc etc) 

This brings me on to ‘Enforcement’ 

If we are honest, we all know there just aren’t enough resources to police this. It will be just like the ‘clean air act’ which doesn’t get enforced. There are lots of people burning coal in built up areas when they should be using ‘smokeless coal’ but when was the last time the police or the environment agency knocked on their door? 

As a chimney sweep, I know dry wood can also be massively polluting to the environment if it’s not burnt in the correct manner, this brings me back to ‘Dry’ wood. We’ve all been sat in our gardens when your next-door neighbour has cut down their hedge and tried burning green wood, because they are too lazy to put it in the garden waste bin. 

Banning the sale of wet wood under 2 cubic meters sounds like a great idea in theory, but it’s actually the wrong solution, it would just lead to more kiln dried wood being imported, resulting in a bigger carbon footprint from all the lorries delivering it.  

Sweden is a country that burns more wood than us & they don’t have these silly regulations like us.  

Final thought 

Just make sure the wood you burn is dry (under 20%) cos you are wasting your time, the heat you do get out of the fire you’ve got isn’t heating your house, it’s just trying to dry out the wet wood you’ve got on your fire. 

Burning wet wood will result in more soot up your chimney also. 

If you want to check you moisture content of your wood have a look on Amazon for a ‘moisture meter’ they are less than £10

Any questions please don’t hesitate to contact me ‘The Sweep Guy’

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