No Christmas Fire for You


In a not-really-surprising-anymore move, local officials embracing the nanny-state mentality are making it illegal for you to gather around the fireplace on Christmas Eve.

The Maricopa County Air Quality Department declared Christmas Eve a no-burn day after the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality posted an air-pollution health watch for today.

Increasing levels of small particulates, morning and evening temperature inversions, cold weather and light winds combined to create the no-burn conditions. Fires add to the particulate pollution, as do vehicles, unpaved roads and equipment such as leaf blowers.

On a no-burn day, residents are asked not to use wood-burning fireplaces, woodstoves or outdoor fire pits and to abstain from burning trash.

Sorry Timmy, NO FIRE FOR YOU!  We all have to do our part to save the planet, and this Christmas Eve is the day we will remember for years to come that we saved Mother Earth.  Now put your fireplace DVD into the machine and quit your whining.

Got to love the comments from this story.

Sorry, we can’t afford the high electricity costs of lighting the furnace. We’ve been burning wood for the last week to keep warm. With no job and no money coming in we have to burn. We are just lucky to have a fireplace and wood. Well, not much, our neighbor’s been stealing some of it when we are gone from the house.

Continuing to highlight these happy times

Being unemployed doesn’t lend itself to firing up the heat pump for a little warmth. We have plenty of wood stored up from tree cuttings around the nieghborhood this year. THere is an exception to the EPA burning rules if the burning is used as the source of heat for the house. BUT I’m not sure if it has to be the ONLY source of heat. Unfortunately, I don’t think they make exceptions for unemployment poverty.

And finally, a man’s man after my own heart.

Really hadn’t planned on having a fire tonight. The lack of a fireplace in my home may have had something to do with that. But after reading this crap, I all of a sudden find myself craving some toasted marshmallows! Nothin like a few pallets from work to spark up the company x-mas party this afternoon! Dont think there will be any problem with getting donations to cover the fine. Think everyone has pretty much had enough of our politicians (inappropriate term) for the year! Comply and conform they say! LOL
And to that, I say………….Kiss My A-S-S and MERRY CHRISTMAS Everyone! Just look for the flames and bring your own marshmallows!

Might even have to give the kids their quads a day early and let em rip up and down the dirt road fer a bit! Get some use outta those new off road use tags I paid for ! Don’t ya love x-mas!!!! lol

Have a happy low-impact, small carbon-footprint, artificial-tree, Jimmy Carter sweater-wearing, recycled paper, Cristmakwanzzakkah.


Comments

  1. I love pappatodd’s claim that this is nanny state or has to do ‘saving the planet.’ WRONG. This has to do with preventing people from having asthma attacks or suffering more from their severe respiratory conditions. In particular, this affects children, the elderly and people who work outside and leads to thousands of hospitalizations a year.

    So, I guess for pappatodd his desire to enjoy a fire on a high pollution day should outweigh childrens’ ability to not have high pollution induced asthma attacks that cause them to wind up in the hospital. And really, isn’t that was Christmas is all about?

  2. “We all have to do our part to save the planet, and this Christmas Eve is the day we will remember for years to come that we saved Mother Earth.”

    I know the conservative war on science can’t allow even for the slightest bit of accuracy to plow through, but the reason for the alert is not for “mother earth” but for people with dminished lung capacity, asthma, COPD, etc.

    The government could say “The Surgeon General recommends not hitting yourself in the face with a hammer”, and you’d probably be the first in line at the Home Depot shouting “The guv’mint cain’t tell me what to do! YEEEEHA! [smash]“.

    Are you pro-air pollution, papatodd? Do you think the world is fundamentally better with or without air pollution. If you’re pro, may I suggest a world tour – Beijing, Lagos, Cairo, Mexico City.

  3. You guys left out, I hate puppies and kittens too.

  4. I am grateful that I won’t spend Christmas Eve and Christmas day with a stuffed head because of the smoke in air. I am a severe allergic reaction to wood smoke.

  5. PS You guys MUST have been out of town, but earlier this week we had this really big thing called a dust storm. And it was really bad too. People died as a direct result of the size and intensity of this monster. The air was thick with dust, to the point where much of the horizon was lost and not visible. Dust storms in the desert? Yep, just another part of nature. Even if EVERY fireplace owner in the valley fired them up this evening, it would be a proverbial drop-in-the-bucket compared to the storm chucked into the air. Sorry you missed it. It was a sight to be seen.

  6. These dust storms must be stopped!! Can’t we get some federal legislation to make them illegal?

    MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL!!

    yeah, that’s right I said it.

  7. Yes, we must do something about the dust storms. But don’t make them illegal. We must TAX the dust-storms. Their carbon footprint is too big not to be making some $$$ off of them, “for the children” of course.

  8. pappatodd – really, try to educate yourself about an issue before you post some nonsense on it. Look dust storms occur naturally here, but they are may times worse because of development construction and the like which removes the harder top layer of desert soil. In fact very small dust particles (not the kind one would see in natural dust storms) are a real problem around here and that is why you see construction sites watering the dirt so that dust is kept to a minimum (this is also has to do with Valley Fever prevention).

    Now, how the fact that ‘nature’ does something occasionally justifies a constant state of man-made poor air quality is rather hard to fathom, but again your thinking is not very knowledgeable on this.

    Oh, you should let the posters who you quote know that in fact the county offers exemptions for people for are in poverty or have no other source of heat. Of course a better solution would be to give subsidies to people who are poor so they can heat their homes with normal heating.

  9. So. You’re comparing naturally occurring dust storms (exacerbated by development as Todd states) to man-made chimney/rubbish smoke.

    You still didn’t answer my question, and it’s not a hard or trick question, papatodd. Would you rather breathe clean air or dirty air?

    And as for your “TERRIBLENANNYSTATEOMGZ!” statement:

    “On a no-burn day, residents are ***asked*** not to use wood-burning fireplaces, woodstoves or outdoor fire pits and to abstain from burning trash.”

    I’m not sure where the fines, punishment, taxes are in the “ask”.

  10. So we can only tax man made disaster like Obama creates and not natural conditions like global warming. I think I’m starting to get it. Being a liberal must be hard work and very confusing.

  11. Roger,

    “I think I’m starting to get it. Being a liberal must be hard work and very confusing.”

    It really is. Unlike many conservatives, we just can’t start off with a presupposition and then only acknowledge the things that support it. We have have to deal with a whole wide tableau of facts.

  12. I guess it’s your use of the word “fact” that adds to the confusion. As a liberal in training, I know it a fact one of our Gods, Al Gore, won a Nobel Prize. But it was for peace, not science. I thought he was our God of science, so I’m confused.

    I also know Cap and Trade is good. It allows old industrial facilities, usually located in poor neighborhoods, to buy carbon credits so they don’t have to up grade the pollution controls. The people that live in those ares are used to it anyway and it helps keep the companies going. It also provides additional revenue to modern companies that have upgraded their pollution control. We can tax the extra income and let the old companies write off the cost of buying the carbon credits. That helps keep the old companies going so it makes sense.

    I learned in school that there were glaciers in Flagstaff 14,000 years ago and they are now gone. Proof of global warming! If we can stop it maybe they will come back. It would be fun to see them here.

    I am confused by the fact the Earth’s atmosphere was mostly carbon dioxide. The Stromatolites excreted oxygen as a waste product. We are now breathing that waste! How do we get rid of it? The Stromatolite are still around so it doesn’t seem to be a problem for them. Still we are being exposed to their waste and that doesn’t sound good.

    Is there a book we can use to know exactly what facts we should use and in what order?

  13. I guess it’s your use of the word “fact” that adds to the confusion. As a liberal in training, I know it a fact one of our Gods, Al Gore, won a Nobel Prize. But it was for peace, not science. I thought he was our God of science, so I’m confused.

    I also know Cap and Trade is good. It allows old industrial facilities, usually located in poor neighborhoods, to buy carbon credits so they don’t have to up grade the pollution controls. The people that live in those ares are used to it anyway and it helps keep the companies going. It also provides additional revenue to modern companies that have upgraded their pollution control. We can tax the extra income and let the old companies write off the cost of buying the carbon credits. That helps keep the old companies going so it makes sense.

    I learned in school that there were glaciers in Flagstaff 14,000 years ago and they are now gone. Proof of global warming! If we can stop it maybe they will come back. It would be fun to see them here.

    I am confused by the fact the Earth’s atmosphere was mostly carbon dioxide. The Stromatolites excreted oxygen as a waste product. We are now breathing that waste! How do we get rid of it? The Stromatolites are still around so it doesn’t seem to be a problem for them. Still we are being exposed to their waste and that doesn’t sound good.

    Is there a book we can use to know exactly what facts we should use and in what order?

  14. “I also know Cap and Trade is good.”

    You do? I don’t (you might be thinking of some other strawman you conservatives set up). I think we should shut down every carbon dioxide belching power plant in the country, replacing it with a nuclear plant. Zero-point emissions, we’re developing the technology to re-use spent fuel rods, and the waste will eventually be able to be used in fusion plants (when humanity finally cracks that nut).

    “I learned in school that there were glaciers in Flagstaff 14,000 years ago and they are now gone. Proof of global warming!”

    Absolutely proof of global warming. In fact, the Earth is currently still transiting the last Ice Age.

    Problem is, we’re disrupting the natural cycle which is harming humanity, and our way of life. The Earth can pretty much shrug off anything (asteroid hits, flood basalt eruptions, etc.) and come back. Earth’s not in jeopardy, but our way of life is.

    Unless you’re so ignorant you believe 6 (soon to be 7) billion organisms can’t affect their ecosystem and surroundings.

    “Still we are being exposed to their waste and that doesn’t sound good.”

    No, it’s not. A little carbon dioxide is great. A lot of carbon dioxide is poison. Mars has a 95% carbon dioxide atmosphere, for instance. Other than maybe some lichens and bacteria, there’s probably not much life there.

    As for books, start with Darwin’s “Origin of the Species” and work your way up. Now, that is going to require you to turn off Glenn Beck and Rushh Limbaugh (because a dense tome like that requires your full attention), but I think you can do it, champ.

  15. I guess for full disclosure, I need to admit I am an geologist and environmental scientist. You did get the part about the nuclear reactors right. You could add that today’s design uses low density fuel rods and reactor design now makes a three mile Island incident impossible.

    You also got the part right about this being part of the natural cycle. You left out that fact one volcanic eruption produced more carbon dioxide emissions than the entire human impact, our that cows and termites are even larger sources of greenhouse gas. Sea level will rise and sea level will fall. Things always speed up as you approach a peak. It is non-linear. Humans need to adapt because you can’t change it.

    You want to end the global warming hype? Stop funding grants to prove it. That’s not science and never will be. You want to focus the argument and get people to work productively on the problem? Your statement “Earth’s not in jeopardy, but our way of life is,” is right. 99% of the life that has lived on this planet is extinct. That’s what happens when you don’t adapt.

    As far as Mars goes, Earth first! We can mine the other planets later.

    Merry Christmas.

  16. Roger,

    Just one more thing:

    “one volcanic eruption produced more carbon dioxide emissions”

    There’s a ton of other stuff released in a volcanic explosion – fine particulate matter which blocks out the Sun. When a Pinatubo or Krakatoa blows, sure there are CFCs and carbon dioxide, but then global temperatures drop because there’s less sun breaching the barrier.

    Sure there are micro effects (Mt. St. Helens killed off our precious Sasquatch, for instance*), but there’s a difference between however many hundreds of millions of cars blasting out smog-chemicals and humans and etc. to think it won’t effect our way of life. A lobster can’t adapt to boiling pot of water.

    Merry Christmas to you!

    * – joking of course. Nothing can kill Bigfoot.

  17. RepublicanSOS says:

    I like the way lobsters adabt to boiling water (and butter).

  18. Actually Klute, humans can, do and will adapt. We do it in different ways. Some biologically and some technologically. If we don’t, we die. Pretty simple when you think about it.

    We need to focus on the chemicals we breath from all sources. They don’t contribute much to global warming, but they will kill you much quicker.

    That’s why Bigfoot left Mars.

  19. Ashen,

    Merry Christmas to you!

  20. I just wanted to point out there are no fireplaces on Mars and everyone is dead! I’m going out tonight a get a fireplace, we can’t let that happen here.

    merry Christmas.

  21. Fortunately, we do not live in Maricopa County, because without wood-burning stoves the people in these parts would suffer.

    The elderly woman who lived here when we arrived was living on $400 a month Social Security. She put twigs she collected around the property during winter to burn in the stove. She had no money to buy wood and was too frail to chop anything. It was 42 F inside the house, near the stove. She kept a small space heater for the bathroom and used it ONLY when she showered. 25 watt bulbs were in a few fixtures, the rest had no bulbs at all.

    She was half-starved when we came in and in threadbare clothes. Her Social Security at $400 is not enough in any way shape or form to pay for even an efficiency apartment, food, utilities.

    But for the sake of the “environment” NO WOOD burning! And to punish those who are too “unenlightened” to appreciate solar, punishing taxes ahead to raise monthly bills for electricity. People aren’t “unenlightened” about solar, they CAN’T AFFORD IT. But where’s the rhetoric to defend average people who will be living in unlight homes, only able to use firewood for heat? The elite Socialists in Romania made sure they had all the luxuries of life while Romanians were burning their furniture for heat and cooking in the winter. That has never been AMerica, it goes against EVERYTHING AMerica stands for, but we are poised to replicate that politically-connected halves and all others haves-not.

    Never seen so many selfish, self-centered cruel people who are willfully blind to the deteriorating plight of Americans around them. The “environment” – an amorphous concept that doesn’t care about anything -is more important than human beings? Or perhaps it isn’t about anything earthy, but simple wealth-grabbing grubbyness.
    Don’t see people scramble and lie and posture for a vague concept, but too many people would even kill their neighbor to take his wealth for their own, so much easier to LIE for a chance to get it.

    So what’s the truth?

  22. “But for the sake of the “environment” NO WOOD burning!”

    Are you freakin’ dense? This isn’t about saving javelina, or preseving the desert pupfish.

    The Maricopa County Air Quality Department ***ASKED*** – did not demand, did not threaten to send out the cops, did not propose taxes or fines – for people not to burn wood BECAUSE THE AIR WOULD BE UNHEALTHY TO BREATHE FOR THE HUMANS LIVING IN MARICOPA COUNTY.

    wanumba, you’ve allegedly been to Africa, West Africa, which means you probably transferred through either Lagos or Nairobi. You’ve seen the air in these megacities. Is it healthy? Would you want your six children to grow up breathing it? No? Why not?

    And as todd stated above “that in fact the county offers exemptions for people for are in poverty or have no other source of heat”.

    My hammer analogy to papatodd above stands.

  23. The air in any American metro area is 1000 times better than the air in December in Lagos or December in New Delhi India, with it’s coal fired electrical plants and cremetoriums and funeral pyres but people around here whine like it’s horrorsville.

    We, along with a million or so other unfortunates “enjoyed” two months of harmattan dust mixed with oil fire smoke when a pipe ruptured at an Abidjan storage facility in the city. Yes, there weren’t quite a few respiratory problems, respiratory problems were an epidemic and very very serious ones. To put it mildly.

    So, we very much can discern and appreciate probably more than most Americans how GOOD our current air quality is. And Americans have the luxury of staying inside climate-controlled homes.

    In Northern AZ, we get to enjoy the “proscribed burns” smoke for a week at a time each. Gotta burn the forests to reduce out of control fires. But then people are told to cut back on their hosuehold fires “for the air quality.”

    We’ve been in the alternative. We have desire to have the USA return to the smoggy 1960s. The progress has been good and right, but we’re getting to a point of diminishing returns and heightened burdens on people instead of creative problem-solving.

    But the current energy path being proposed is going to FORCE more people onto wood, which will increase smoke. If people cared as much as they SAY they do, about the environment, how come they don’t promote cheap electrical and oil fuel so people can afford to convert to cleaner burning energy? It’d be good for air quality and keep people more comfortable in their homes, especially the elderly. And it’s immediately FEASIBLE, unlike solar, which is too expensive.

    All we hear is stop this or stop that or reduce that or curtail that. Where’s the traditional American approach of “How can we solve this problem AND get ahead so everyone wins?”

    No, get stupid dead-end statements like “Would YOU want your kids to grow up breathing that?”

    “Oh duh! Gives them a coat of soot to protect them from the sun!”

    Here’s your sign.

  24. wanumba
    Saying the air is better than in New Delhi is sort of like saying this stagnant water is better than raw sewage. I mean really.

    When it comes to particulate matter, which is what the burning of wood adds to, New Delhi has an annual average of 150 mg/m^3 for particulate matter less than 10 microns. In some areas of the Valley PM10 annual levels are as high as 62 mg/m^3. Not exactly 1000 better.

    Also, this is like Northern Arizona where people might actually burn wood for heat or cooking, we are talking mostly about people who are burning wood in a fireplace for ‘ambience’ because that is what they are used to and want to import that here.

    Some part of air-quality in Phoenix have improved, (it was better in the 1960’s) but this has come about through law that were enacted and at the time (the 80’s) were claimed by people to be ‘posturing’ to ‘eastern elites.’ No doubt if you had been here then you would have joined in the chorus.

  25. “The air in any American metro area is 1000 times better than the air in December in Lagos or December in New Delhi India…”

    Well, thanks for the newsflash there, Headline News.

    WHY is it 1000 times better? Because all the John Galts and Dagny Taggerts decided to install scrubbers on their smokestacks and refined catalytic converters on their cars?

    NO – massive government regulation of everything from leaf blowers to coal-fired power plants.

    “In Northern AZ, we get to enjoy the “proscribed burns” smoke for a week at a time each. Gotta burn the forests to reduce out of control fires. But then people are told to cut back on their hosuehold fires “for the air quality.”

    Because there is a societal need (as the people of Heber and Overgaard can attest to) to prevent the whole forest from going up in flames. It is called “balance”.

    “The progress has been good and right…”

    And also driven by the aforementioned massive government regulations, not by the mercies of American business.

    “All we hear is stop this or stop that or reduce that or curtail that. Where’s the traditional American approach of “‘How can we solve this problem AND get ahead so everyone wins?'”

    Yes, in the immediate sense, you have to stop this and curtail that. Because:

    Dec. 25, 2009

    “The state recommends children and adults with respiratory problems avoid outdoor activities on Saturday and Sunday and suggests the general public limit outdoor activity over the weekend.”

  26. Ya’ll crack me up. You think this story is actually about air quality? Try again…

  27. Vs the Bildeberg/Bohemian Grove plot to destroy Christmas you made it out to be? Yeah.

  28. Don’t be ridiculous! Christmas is over a year away. You’re living in the past.

  29. I generally really do not article in Blogs but your web site forced me to, wonderful work.. lovely …

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