2010 May 28: Canada, British Columbia, Comox Valley: All burning should be banned

2010 May 28: Canada, British Columbia, Comox Valley: All burning should be banned


By Alice Hughes, Comox Valley Echo May 28, 2010
A letter to Comox mayor and council:
Re: Burning yard waste within the Town of Comox
We live on the border of the City of Courtenay and the Regional District. Several nights a week for the entire winter months when the burning of "yard waste" on any property in the RD is permitted, the windows of our home are shut tight from supper time until well after midnight.
A lot more than twigs and leaves were burning. The toxicity was high and the odour unbearable as smoldering garbage, old wood, and even mattresses were going up in flames.
I called the Courtenay Fire Department and was told that with a one-time permit from November 1 to May 15, fires are allowed. Excluding the non-yard waste component, even the World Health Organization does not support this type of burning.
The Department of Ecology for Washington State, which is the equivalent of our Provincial Ministry of the Environment, does not allow urban burning of yard waste because it is as dangerous as cigarette smoke. Not only is carbon dioxide a greenhouse gas but the particulate matter which is full of these dioxins, also includes formaldehyde, ash and acrolein.
With every breath these particulants reach down deep into the lung tissue and increase risk of heart and lung diseases such as asthma, emphysema, COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) and cancer.
Asthma is the main cause of school absenteeism and the leading cause of hospital admissions. Canadians spend billions of dollars paying for the health effects of air pollution.
I have friends in Ontario who own a large property. Their community does not allow burning of any yard waste at any time of the year so each spring and late fall they have a lot of work to take care of the dead brush, the falling pine cones and assorted clean-up. They do this willingly because they wanted large property.
Anyone who owns land knows they are responsible for looking after it. If my roof needs fixing no one is going to pay to replace if. If you can’t afford to have your waste chipped or hauled away I don’t appreciate having burning enforced on my family. No one buys large properties without knowing that there will be a lot of maintenance. So once you open the door to a few, you will then have to triage all the others coming behind.
I hope you will consider that neither smoke nor water can be contained in an open setting and once either begin to flow, the direction they take is impossible to control.
We are all neighbours in the Valley and I do not wish the people of Comox to have to endure what we experience here along the border to Powerhouse Road.
Alice Hughes

© Copyright (c) Canwest News Service
This entry was posted in Canada - British Columbia = BC. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s