Burn wood, feel good
The National Firewood Association (NFA) gives firewood a positive voice in the public sphere.
Little in this world is as dependable and useful as firewood. Yet it is constantly under attack as being antiquated, irrelevant — and a nuisance.
It’s easy to feel good about burning wood. Burned locally, using proper techniques in an efficient stove, firewood is an eco-friendly fuel that’s renewable, inexpensive and abundant in many areas. It has a place in contemporary discussions about alternative fuels and renewable resources. And it has a rich history of saving lives when all else had failed.
Someone ought to do something
That someone is the NFA. Nearly every conversation about burning wood begins with charges of air pollution and the the environmental impact of logging. Yet, experienced wood burners know that wood burns more efficiently without smoke and we have seen the amazing results of a properly managed forest.
Firewood is typically harvested and produced within an hour’s drive from where it’s burned. No tanker ships, no pipelines. That alone gives it a head-start on environmental responsibility. It also stimulates the local economy. Those who cut their own wood still need chainsaws and service, a chimney sweep, or a new stove — and lots of groceries.
The problem is that there is no recognized, unified voice to speak on behalf of firewood or defend it legislatively. It is at a significant disadvantage in representation when pitted against any other fuel, including wind or solar.
With no big corporations supporting it, firewood is vulnerable.
The NFA speaks for firewood
As of November 2016, there are 13 bills specifically mentioning firewood before the United States Congress today. At the state level, 58 bills concerning firewood are under review. Further restrictions on burning, transport and storage crop up every year in local government actions across the country.
Firewood as a whole may never come under direct attack. However, it is evident that without representation, firewood is extremely vulnerable to “death by 1000 cuts” as state and local governments patch together a confusing web of varying restrictions and regulations.
In response, the NFAs “Burn Wood, Feel Good” campaign is designed to highlight the good news about firewood, educating the public on firewood’s positive attributes.
The NFA messages also offer solutions. It is our contention that misguided practices by inexperienced or ill-informed wood burners are the single largest cause of problems and complaints about burning wood. Our program will deliver basic educational messages targeted at helping the public understand the problems and solutions.
A short list of common errors to be addressed:
- Burning unseasoned wood
- Incorrect operation of draft
- Shoddy Installations
- Ignorance of safety issues
- A lack of professionalism at the lower end of the market
We must become stewards of firewood fuel and take it upon ourselves to improve our own lot. There is simply no one else to do it.
The NFA speaks for firewood on its merits alone:
- Available to millions
- Supports local economy
What the NFA is doing to help
- We bring a pro-firewood voice to controversies and criticism of firewood
- We monitor and report on firewood and wood-burning related legislation
- We educate the public on proper firewood selection, storage and burning practices
Upcoming projects include efforts to hold firewood vendors accountable, including a resource for consumers to rate their firewood suppliers online. The searchable database will showcase NFA members and others with high ratings while discouraging the dodgy practices of “weekend warriors.”
The NFA needs the support of consumers and firewood professionals alike. Our mission is to improve both the image and experience of burning wood to ensure that it remains relevant and prominent in any discussion or debate surrounding renewable resources and sustainable fuels.