As you know, I love being outside enjoying nature and the fresh, clean air. That being said, between the months of November and February, when it gets really cold, I love to bundle up inside where it’s nice and warm! Sometimes I like to build a cozy fire in my fireplace, but did you know that if you live in Sacramento County you must Check Before You Burn? It’s the law in Sacramento County, including the cities of Citrus Heights, Elk Grove, Folsom, Galt, Isleton, Rancho Cordova and Sacramento.
Wood burning during the winter causes over 50 percent of our area’s air pollution. The purpose of Check Before You Burn is to help protect us from the harmful smoke that is created when burning wood and for our area to stay in compliance with federal air quality laws.
Smoke that comes from burning firewood is bad for our health, especially for you kids because your lungs aren’t fully grown yet. Wood smoke contains many of the same chemicals that are in cigarettes and none of them are good for us. It can cause us to get sick with illnesses that make us cough or hurt our throats and lungs.
To find out if we can light a fire in our fireplace or wood stove:
- Download the FREE Sacramento Region Air Quality app, available in all three app stores
- Call 1-877-NO-BURN-5 (1-877-662-8765)
- Follow the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District on Twitter @AQMD
- Visit AirQuality.org
- Read The Sacramento Bee’s weather page
Be sure to check back next month to find out my favorite ways to stay warm WITHOUT burning wood!