Monday, May 30, 2016

Too bad about Clean Air Day. :-(

Wednesday June 8, 2016 is Clean Air Day, part of Canadian Environment Week.   From Environment and Climate Change Canada's website we learn that:

"Clean Air Day raises awareness and encourages action on clean air and climate change issues.  Canadians can show their commitment by participating in activities that contribute to cleaner air, healthier comunities and a better quality of life for all."

The day used to appear on Woodstock's City Services Calendar, but seems to have been dropped from this year's edition.
The omission is hardly surprising, given that Woodstock allows one of the dirtiest air-related practices imaginable: open air burning.

So, in honour of Clean Air Day, here are some excerpts from "17 reasons to ban wood burning", by the Utah Physicians for a Healthy Environment:

"1. Wood smoke is the most toxic type of pollution in most cities, more dangerous than auto pollution and most industrial pollution.  Lighting a wood like starting up your own toxic incinerator."

 "8. If you smell wood smoke, you know you are being harmed.  The sweet smell comes from deadly compounds like benzene."

"16. People should have just as much protection from wood smoke as from cigarette smoke and for all the same reasons."

Clean Air Day is obviously too embarrassing an occasion to be noticed by Woodstock Council - at least as long as we have an Open Air Burning Bylaw on the books.

The above text appeared as a UR Opinion post on the Sentinel Review's website on May 29, 2016.

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