WHA response to Defra Clean Air Strategy
We have submitted the WHA response to Defra Clean Air Strategy. The consultation is the first step in the Government’s strategy to improve air quality in the UK. We have outlined how biomass boilers are not the cause of urban air pollution and how the Government can make biomass systems even more efficient through new standards scheme.
We thank all members for their comments, feedback, and evidence that have helped form our response.
Key points in the WHA response to Defra Clean Air Strategy:
- Although biomass fuel is used in biomass boilers and in biomass power generation as in recreational open fires and old stoves, the emissions profile is very different
- There is a very small uptake of non-domestic biomass boilers in conurbations, particularly those that currently suffer from poor air quality
- Emissions related to wood burning mainly arise from “a decorative or secondary heating source”, garden waste burning, and patio wood burners
- The main issue of emissions from wood burning in urban centres is related to open fires and in part old stoves that do not meet the new Ecodesign standards
- Analysis of RHI Emission Certificates suggests that biomass boilers, in general, have been tested at particulate matter emission and NOx levels that are considerably below the legal limit
- Consumers should be educated on what fuels are appropriate to use in their heating systems, how to use their boilers to avoid increased emissions (i.e. avoiding cold starting, compared to steady state running), and how to maintain the system.
- The UK could show leadership by adopting a new quality management scheme for non-domestic biomass installations and further tighten the air quality emission criteria under the RHI. This would drastically reduce any emissions from the biomass heat sector.
Should you have any questions to our response, please feel free to get in touch.