Home' Napier Mail : October 25th 2011 Contents 6 NAPIER MAIL, OCTOBER 26, 2011
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Home fires to stop
burning in weeks
The Environment Ministry's national environment standards for air
quality, introduced in 2004, included standards for outdoor air
Regional councils must identify areas where air quality does, or is
likely to, exceed the standards. These ''airsheds'' must be
monitored for pollutants.
Councils had to ensure all airsheds were compliant by 2013. One
exceedance a year is permitted.
In January this year Environment Minister Nick Smith said the 2013
deadline was unrealistic. Those areas at present exceeding the
standards fewer than 10 times a year now have until 2016 to
become compliant, and areas exceeding standards more than 10
times a year must comply by 2020.
Cold times: Neralee Edlin, of Flaxmere, is unsure how she will heat her home when
the regional council ban on open fires takes effect from next January.
Hastings and Napier
people have just 10
more weeks to enjoy
open fires in their
has prohibited dom-
estic open fires from
January 1, despite
the delayed implem-
entation of national
air quality stand-
ards, and against
the wishes of mayors
Barbara Arnott and
There are 2000
domestic open fire-
places in Hastings
and 1000 in Napier.
The regional coun-
cil needs to lower the
amount of particulate matter
over Napier and Hastings in
order to meet national environ-
Under those standards, the
amount of particulate matter
(PM10) in the air must not
exceed 50 micrograms per cubic
metre, with only one breach
allowed in each area, or air-
shed'', each year.
At present the limit is
regularly exceeded over winter
in both centres, the primary
cause being the burning of wood
for domestic fires. This winter
the limit was exceeded 12 times
in Hastings and four times in
The standards, introduced in
2004, were to be met by 2013 but
earlier this year Environment
Minister Nick Smith pushed the
deadline out to 2016 for areas
with fewer than 10 breaches
(including Napier) and 2020 for
others (including Hastings).
Hastings Mayor Mr Yule and
Napier Mayor Ms Arnott said
they were surprised at the
regional council deadline, given
that the implementation date of
the standards had been bumped
back. Both said two months was
insufficient time to advise
people of the prohibition.
From 2014 the regional coun-
cil will prohibit the use of solid
fuel burners installed before
Those installed between 1996
and August 2005 are prohibited
from 2016 and those installed
after September 2005 will be
prohibited from 2018 in
Hastings and 2020 in Napier.
Regional council chairman
Fenton Wilson said an education
programme would run in the
lead-up to winter.
We're not patrolling the
streets looking for these fires. It
just gives us a means to deal
with a complaint,'' he said.
The prohibition had already
been bumped out a year and had
to be enforced now so the
deadline could be met.
Flaxmere resident Neralee
Edlin, who has used the open
fire in her Housing New Zealand
house since 1997, said she and
her three children would
struggle to keep warm in winter
without it and would not be able
to afford alternative heating
We use it quite a lot,
especially in the morning.
Housing New Zealand told me to
stop using it a while ago, but we
need it to stay warm. It doesn't
make sense to me.''
Bay of Plenty Regional
Council is banning open fires in
Rotorua from May 2015.
Nelson banned open fires in
2008. Christchurch followed in
Awesome: Jake Peters, left, from Matamata and Liam Brown, right,
meet former All Black Michael Jones.
I'll remember it for the rest of
my life,'' says Napier 10-year-old
Liam Brown of his experience
leading the French team on to
Eden Park for their game
Liam, who attends Bledisloe
Primary, won an ANZ Bank
Future Captains competition
and was flown to Auckland with
his dad, Stephen, for a dream
Rugby World Cup weekend.
When I found out I had won,
I couldn't sleep and couldn't wait
to go to Auckland.
I was famous for a few weeks
and was the envy of all my
mates,'' he says.
Liam was one of 96 children
from throughout New Zealand
who accompanied a Rugby
World Cup 2011 captain on to
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