Wood Burning Stoves: Air polluting

In the great flurry of home upgrading many of us are putting in wood burning stoves and the evening perfume of burning wood has become common in the street.  There has been at least one smokeless coal fire in longstanding use in our street where the home has no central heating.  Now home improvers are increasingly installing wood burners.  As independent experts are already worried about the poor quality of the air we breathe, we took a look at whether wood burners might make it worse.

The best statement of advice we have found comes from ‘Environmental Protection UK’ : Emissions of local air pollution from a modern wood-fuelled appliance are usually higher than those of an equivalent gas fired appliance.  If you live in a rural area where the air is relatively clean a wood fuelled system may be the best option, whilst if you live in an urban area with poor air quality a gas-fired system may be the best choice environmentally.

The Daily Telegraph has written about wood burning stoves specifically in London: they are the ‘must-have’ appliance even though they are expensive and inefficient and that they add pollution to the air, quoting Australian data.  The author concludes:  I already live in a big, dangerous city clogged with traffic. I am not concerned about a few microns of extra air pollution. Indeed, tonight I shall put an extra log in the stove.

Clean Air in London – campaigning for cleaner air – refers to Borough Councils’ concerns about wood stoves, especially as we have some of the worst air quality in Europe and are not meeting our legal air quality standards.  The report notes that appliances are assessed as meeting emissions standards on a measurement of ‘visible’ smoke rather than ‘invisible’ pollutants.  It refers to: ‘A 2008 study by the Government which concluded that an increase in wood burning in the UK (to about 7% of UK heat demand) using wood burning appliances with average emissions would mean an extra 577 km of UK roads exceeding European limits for PM10 [tiny particulates which we breathe in] and health costs on UK citizens of around £2.8 billion. – See more at: http://cleanairinlondon.org/sources/updating-the-clean-air-act-for-modern-fuels-and-technologies/#sthash.kgNhatt7.dpuf.

Residents installing stoves are probably buying a stove which is graded as exempt from control.  Clean Air in London says that the standard applied is out of date and does not include assessment against our concerns regarding particulates today.

Kings College London, which carries out air assessments in London,  has research data which raises serious concerns about air pollution and wood stoves.  This is quite technical and here is the link if you want to skim it : http://www.londonair.org.uk/london/asp/LAQNSeminar/pdf/july2011/Gary%20Fuller_Wood_Smoke_PM_in_London.pdf

Wood burning stoves do add to air pollution even the approved ones.

Another link:  http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/10/15/us-eu-air-pollution-idUSBRE99E04V20131015

Rail bridges being replaced in Croxted Road, Rosendale Road and Village Way in early 2014. Read about parking restrictions and traffic diversions.

Further details of the bridge replacement works are here.     Southwark and Lambeth Councils published a joint Lambeth and Southwark Traffic Order 13 Dec 2013

Latest (2nd Feb 2014): The Rosendale and Croxted Road bridge replacements were completed successfully.  All diversions and parking controls have ended and yellow lines removed.







1. NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that, to enable Network Rail to carry out bridge replacement

works, the Council of the London Borough of Lambeth with the agreement of the Council of the

London Borough of Southwark intend to make an order the effect of which would be to



ban pedestrians and vehicles from entering that length of :-

(i) Rosendale Road which lies between Hawarden Grove and a point 22 metres south-east of the south-eastern wall of the south-easternmost railway bridge over Rosendale Road;

(ii) Croxted Road which lies between Hawarden Grove and Croxted Close;

(iii) Village Way which lies between Half Moon Lane and No. 15 Village Way (an alternative route for vehicles 7.5 tonnes and under would be available via Half Moon Lane and Red Post Hill and vice versa),

Provided that the pedestrian or vehicle does not interfere with or disrupt the works exemptions would apply to any pedestrian or vehicle requiring access to or egress from properties or premises only accessible from these lengths of roads; and

(B) ban vehicles from parking or waiting (including waiting for the purpose of loading or unloading a vehicle) at any time in;:

(i) Burbage Road

(a) both sides, between Gallery Road and a point 20 metres north-west of Gallery Road;

(b) the north-east side, between Turney Road and No. 48 Burbage Road;

(ii) Gallery Road,

(a) both sides, between Burbage Road and a point 20 metres south-west of Burbage Road;

(b) the north-west side, between a point 220 metres south-west of Burbage Road and a point 250 metres south-west of Burbage Road;

(iii) Turney Road, both sides, between Nos. 140/142 Turney Road and Nos. 154/156 Turney Road;

(iv) Half Moon Lane,

(a) the south-east side, between Red Post Hill and Village Way;

(b) the north-west side, between Red Post Hill and a point 20 metres south-west of Red Post Hill.

2.  Alternative routes for vehicles affected by the bans referred to in paragraph 1(A)(i) and (ii)  above would be available via:

(a) Norwood Road and Thurlow Park Road; (b) Turney Road, Rosendale Road, Thurlow Park Road, Norwood Road (southbound), Christchurch Road, Hardel Rise, Tulse Hill and Norwood Road (northbound); and

(c) Dalkeith Road, Croxted Road, Thurlow Park Road, Norwood Road (southbound), Christchurch Road, Hardel Rise, Tulse Hill and Norwood Road (northbound).

3.   Alternative routes for pedestrians affected by the bans referred to in paragraph 1(A)(i) and (ii) above would be available via Norwood Road, Half Moon Lane, Burbage Road and Turney Road and vice versa and for pedestrians affected by the ban referred to in paragraph 1(A)(iii) above via  Half Moon Lane and Red Post Hill and vice versa.

4. The bans would only apply at such times and to such extent as shall be indicated by the placing

of the appropriate traffic signs.

5. The Order would come into force on 6th January 2014 and would continue for a maximum duration of 3 months or until the works have been completed whichever is the earlier.

Dated 13th December 2013

Abu Barkatoolah

Head of Transportation

Published 14 December 2014 (SB)

New pedestrian island on Burbage Road at the Dulwich Village roundabout

LATEST: (5 July 2014): The pedestrian roundabout was approved at the DCC on 19th March 2014 and will be implemented over the summer, current dates 4-12 August 2014.

LATEST (2nd Feb 2014):  This will be submitted to the Dulwich Community Council on 19th March 2014 for a decision.

UPDATE: the consultation has ended.  We await details of the construction plan.

Around a year ago the Dulwich Society made a successful bid for Southwark Cleaner Greener Safer funds to create an island to assist pedestrian crossing of Burbage Road at the Dulwich Village roundabout – see our previous post on improving safety here.   The council have agreed to place the island at the end of the road where it can be easily seen by lorries and HGVs and have circulated a letter to local residents and stakeholders inviting comments by 20 December 2013.   Whilst car traffic can still turn left into Burbage Road from Gallery Road, larger vehicles will have to traverse around the roundabout to access Burbage Road.

Full details and a site plan are at Burbage & Dulwich Village Roundabout Consultation

If the consultation is successful, and the proposal approved by the Dulwich Community Council in January then construction will start in March / April 2014.  In order to ensure the scheme is safety constructed on site, Burbage Road will be closed for 7 days (at the junction with the roundabout). Appropriate traffic management will be put in place to ensure pedestrians can still cross Burbage Road at this location.

Residents are invited to send any comments to the project manager, Chris Mascord chris.mascord@southwark.gov.uk by 20th December.

Published (updated 16 Jan 2014)