Breathe Utah launches wood burning awareness campaign

Local News

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – A local clean air group says there’s a big problem with people continuing to burn on restricted days.

That’s why Breathe Utah is launching a new awareness campaign.

It’s the Know When to Burn campaign. The goal is to remind people who burn it takes all of us to help clear the air during the dreaded inversions.

Take one step outside and you feel it. Even when healthy, the pollution can weigh you down.

One thing contributing to this blanket over the valley is burning on restricted days.

“Burning wood and burning solid fuel, you know, like charcoal, leaves, trash, stuff like that, that you shouldn’t be burning, actually does contribute a huge amount to our inversions,” said Ashley Miller with Breathe Utah.

She says burning releases direct particulate matter to the air and accounts for 12-15% of pollution during an inversion.

She says it’s especially bad for those living nearby.

Miller says the campaign is needed because people are still burning on restricted days and enforcement is lacking.

“Our Know When to Burn campaign is basically a tool that people can use to better understand how to figure out when is an appropriate time to burn solid fuel.”

An effort to help us all breathe a little easier and help offenders avoid a potentially hefty fine.

“There’s a fine up to $299 for a second offense,” said Miller.

So, how do you know if it’s a voluntary or mandatory action day? The ABC4 Pinpoint Weather Team keeps you up to date every day during our forecasts.

The campaign also includes curriculum for students K-12 that is approved by the board of education.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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For this Beetdigger and Ute it’s an honor to be doing what he loves in his home state! Glen is an award-winning journalist, who joined the ABC4 News team in June 2013. You can catch him anchoring ABC4 News at 5 and 6, Monday through Friday. He also serves as our Senior Political Correspondent, keeping you up to date on issues that impact your life at the city, state and national level. His political reports run throughout the week, and he hosts Inside Utah Politics, Sunday mornings at 8. The Utah Headliners Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists has recognized Glen as the best government and military television reporter in the state. Before returning home to Utah, he spent 11 1/2 years developing his journalism skills in other states. He held various on-air and management positions at KPVI in Pocatello, Idaho, WGBA in Green Bay, Wisconsin and KKCO in Grand Junction, Colorado during that time. Read More...

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