Consider the following:
There are currently 48 different pieces of legislation pending at the federal and state level that specifically mention firewood. (BillTrack50, Nov. 2015). This does not include county and municipal ordinances.
USDA/APHIS is close to implementing new regulations that will place labeling and record keeping requirements on companies transporting firewood across state borders. Also under consideration is a move to allow third-party certification of kilns inside and outside quarantine areas.
The EPA has recently clamped down on stove manufacturers, requiring the most stringent emissions standards in history and obsoleting many stoves currently on the market.
All other fuels (including pellets, solar and wind) have well-funded organizations watching out for the interests of their respective markets.
The NFA began as an organization dedicated to serving those who make a living from firewood, but have learned that the biggest threat to the industry is legislation that affects everyone who burns wood, whether they buy it or cut it themselves.
Member Benefits for Firewood Professionals
- The NFA works to make sure firewood remains a vibrant and viable business in the 21st century.
- The NFA Professional newsletter subscription keeps you informed on legislation and the latest news on firewood trends and techniques from around the globe.
- A listing in our user-customizable NFA Member Directory.
- We also share proven marketing and business tips, as well as ideas from our members and others in the industry.
- E-mail alerts – We’ll let you know what you can do to help and when/where to speak up.
- A pair of NFA bumper stickers to show your enthusiastic support of burning wood and rights to use the NFA logo on your marketing materials and equipment.
- Our public outreach efforts is creating consumer members who will want to buy from an NFA-affiliated supplier.
The NFA can do a lot for the firewood industry,
but its strength depends on its members.
What’s so important about firewood?
We believe firewood deserves special status because of its crucial role in human history. Firewood has heated dwellings and cooked meals since the stone age, and brought us all the way into the industrial age before alternative fuels became widely available.
That firewood is the only fuel that can be harvested, processed and burned by a single individual is the crux of our assertion that the right to burn firewood must be carefully considered as a right to survive.
When the ancient philosophers spoke of the classical elements, earth, air, water and fire — what is it that you suppose was on fire? Fire is not an element — it is an exothermic chemical reaction. Wood is the elemental part of the equation.
Now, notice that the other ‘classical’ elements have any number of organizations shouting loudly to promote conservation and influence regulation. The American Lung Association (air quality), Greenpeace (Oceans and earth), Earth Day… where is the group representing fire? About the only time fire is mentioned is in relation to a forest fire or structural fire.
Is Firewood Under Attack?
The answer is a qualified yes. In certain parts of the country it has become illegal to install a (wood) fireplace in a new building, and in others burning wood is banned at the times of year when it is most needed.
While we understand that these regulations were adopted to address real air-quality issues locally, we believe there are more forward-thinking solutions other than banning the use of firewood altogether.
Federally, firewood is being ignored. The Department of Energy completely omitted wood heat from it’s recent publication “Energy Saver: Tips on Saving Money & Energy at Home.”
Here’s an excerpt: “Although several different types of fuels are available
to heat our homes, nearly half of us use natural gas.” That’s an odd way to say “More than half of us don’t.”
Wood stoves are facing the most stringent EPA regulation in history, and there’s no telling what the future will bring. The one thing that is certain is that every other fuel has loud voices and well-organized groups driving focused agendas that do not benefit firewood.
Without your support of the NFA firewood has a vast number of critics — and no strong voice speaking in its defense.