Open burning or wood heating the main culprit?
In virtually every story published about burning, we read something similar to, “Hospital admissions for children with respiratory diseases were on average 70 per cent higher in the Valley than the rest of B.C., asthma rates were 14 per cent higher and chronic respiratory illness in people over 45 was 50 per cent higher in the Valley.” (Council backs off new burning bylaws, Sept. 8/17, Citizen)
These stories always leave me with questions, such as: What proportion of those children admitted to hospital with respiratory diseases come from a home that heats with wood?
And a graph showing the admissions by month might also be enlightening.
I have lived in 23 different communities across Canada and overseas in the past 50 years, and none came remotely close to having as many homes heat with wood as are found in this valley. I’m okay with some burning, but there is simply no escaping it around here in the winter.
I really wonder whether open burning is the main problem.