Whether you have chosen a fire, fireplace or heating appliance for decorative or aesthetic purposes which is only occasionally lit or as a primary heat source in your home you may want to answer the question what is the environmental impact of your choice. There are many sound arguments highlighting the shortfalls of a traditional open fire as a heat source but few would be brave enough to deride its aesthetic affect in spite of its polluting qualities. For a decorative fireplace there are many gas, electric and bioethanol ‘hearth appliances’ alternatives available which capture the effect of a real fire. For those requiring more serious heat you may wish to consider a fire insert or stove which are fuelled by logs, pellets or gas with a low environmental impact.
Bioethanol fuel is derived from biomass often corn and have low carbon dioxide emissions. The advantages of bioethanol fire includes they do not have to be vented and can be placed anywhere. The decorative style is often ultra-modern although inserts are available to bring back to life traditional fireplaces. Gas fires can often be retrofitted into existing fireplaces with the addition of a chimney liner and provide a low emissions alternative to wood or solid fuel stoves. LPG contains more carbon than natural gas, is more expensive but burns up to three times hotter than natural gas. Gas fire can be vent free, fitted to an existing chimney or directly vented through an outside wall and are low maintenance.
Turning to solid fuels stoves and appliances the new breed of biomass stove and heating appliances fuelled by pellets burn very hot and like logs arguably have a neutral carbon score. However hydrocarbons and nitro-oxides are and can be released if the pellet stove or log burner is used inefficiently. Although at the point of use electric fires are non-polluting and 100% efficient it has to be taken into consideration up 75% is lost in the production and distribution process but provide a great alternative as a low cost occasional heat source.
You will also find in this section articles relating to manufactures, government police and NGO efforts to reduce our carbon foot print through policy directives and hints and tips on making your home more energy efficient and how to gain the best performance from your fire, stove or heating appliance.
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How The Government Plans to Tackle Energy Shortages
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Fracking, The Pros the Cons and why it’s so Controversial.
Generating Electricity from a Log Burner
Why Oil Prices That “Should” Be Going Higher Are Falling Lower
News from the Department of Energy and Climate Change
The Myth, the Science and the Solution to Open log Fires.
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Boom, Boom? The Domestic Use of Gas and its Appliances.
How to Store logs and Build a Log Store
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