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Spare The Air Alert Ordered For Wednesday, More Coming?

Bay Area air quality officials issue another prohibition on wood burning, this one for Wednesday. Cold weather may prompt more bans.

Keep that wood in the shed. At least for tomorrow.

And maybe the day after that. And the day after that.

For the fourth time in the first 16 days of 2013, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District has issued a Spare The Air order.

This winter alert is scheduled for Wednesday.

Aaron Richardson, a spokesman for the BAAQMD, said there's a possibility three or four Spare the Air alerts could be issued this week.

He said the weather forecast calls for continued cold weather with light winds and no rain. That kind of weather tends to trap particulates in the air and prompt the wood-burning bans.

The alerts prohibit the burning of wood, firelogs, pellets or other solid fuels in a fireplace or other wood-burning device. Residents whose only source of heat is wood burning are exempt from the prohibition.

First-time violators are given the option of taking an online wood smoke class or paying a $100 fine. Second-time violators are fined $500. The fines continue to increase with each violation.

El Cucuy January 17, 2013 at 01:18 AM
Patch loves these days more than PG&E because the stories are guaranteed page-hit generating troll-bait.
Chris Nicholson January 17, 2013 at 05:01 PM
FYI, yesterday's Spare the Air alert was the fourth false alarm. So they are zero for four so far this year. Looks like we *might* (barely) hit the limit in Vallejo today (Lamorinda air is WAY below limits). Again their rule is to ban burning in the ENTIRE bay area if they GUESS that they might hit the limit ANYWHERE. Total junk science.
SL January 17, 2013 at 11:01 PM
is anyone doing anything to fight this? This is one of the coldest winters yet...I freeze without using my fireplace..the heater otherwise just cranks and gives off a very uneven heat not to mention the PG&E bill skyrocketing out of control.
Paul L Wilson January 18, 2013 at 04:07 AM
Who has authorized the BAAQMD to levy fines and assessments in the bay area for burning of wood, fire logs, pellets or other solid fuels in a fireplace or other wood-burning device? The Federal gov., Counties, Individual Cities just where dose this power come from? These are not elected officials. Under what criteria do they call a spare the air alert? The EPA has certified certain wood pellet stoves as clean burning but the BAAQMD doesn’t recognize this fact and makes no exemption for those stoves. Are they more powerful than the Federal gov. EPA and able to over ride these certifications and those government agencies at their whim?
Chris J Kapsalis February 16, 2013 at 04:00 PM
It is strange how the winter spare the air days just stopped, although there has been very simolars days/condionts since the last spare the air day when spare the air days were called all the time. Did something happen? A new meteoroligist at Spare the air day headquarters. I know I know you can't make me happy. I am not unhappy, in fact happy is they are calling them more sparingly now as should be.

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