A new standard called Ecodesign means from 2022 you will only be able to buy more efficient Ecodesign stoves.
Stoves can provide warmth and character in any home, but their impact on the environment has led to new rules being introduced in the UK and across Europe to help reduce carbon emissions and other pollutants.
In May, the government implemented new rules on burning wet wood to crack down on emissions, and the forthcoming Ecodesign rules mean homeowners will only be able to buy stoves which are environmentally-friendly and energy efficient.
Here’s what you need to know ahead of the new rules coming into effect, and what you can do to improve the efficiency of your current stove.
(MORE: Best outdoor log burners)
What is Ecodesign?
Ecodesign will be implemented across Europe from 1 January 2022. The legislation, which was introduced by the European Union, also forms part of the government’s Clean Air Strategy and means that all new stoves bought after this date will need to meet agreed emissions standards.
The emission standards include limits for toxic pollutants including particulate matter (PM), organic gaseous compounds (OGC), carbon monoxide (CO) and nitrogen oxides (NOx).
Why is Ecodesign Being Introduced?
Air pollution is a significant environmental risk to public health, and burning at home is a major contributor to this.
When certain types of fuel are burnt, such as wet wood and house coal, stoves can emit small, harmful particles of air pollution called fine particulate matter (PM2.5), which can enter the body’s lungs and blood.
The new standard will raise the efficiency of log burners across the UK, improve air quality and be better for the environment.
Will There be a Ban on Log Burners?
No, you can still use an existing log burner or stove, but from 1 January 2022 new stoves must be Ecodesign-approved.
However, you may wish to update an older stove to a more efficient modern model that is Ecodesign Ready (more on this below), and consider burning wood that features the Ready to Burn mark.
What Does an Ecodesign Ready Stove Mean?
In advance of the implementation of Ecodesign in 2022, the Stove Industry Alliance (SIA) introduced its Ecodesign Ready scheme to show homeowners which stoves are already compliant with the new rules.
This is a voluntary scheme that stove manufacturers can sign up to, and the SIA supports them by awarding them with SIA Ecodesign Ready accreditation if their stoves meet the lower emission limits.
Morley Sage, chair of the SIA, said of the scheme: “The stove industry is committed to continuous appliance improvement as evidenced by the introduction of the SIA Ecodesign Ready scheme which clearly identifies appliances that already meet the strict ecodesign standards that come into force in 2022.”
What are the Benefits of Getting an Ecodesign Stove?
Ecodesign Ready stoves produce fewer particulate emissions, which is not only better for yours, and your family’s health, but it is better for the environment.
The SIA says that an Ecodesign Ready appliance used with properly seasoned wood fuel reduces particulate emissions by up to 90% compared to an open fire.
Moreover, you will need fewer logs to produce the same amount of heat compared to a stove which isn’t Ecodesign Ready, which will cut fuel costs.
(MORE: Stylish log store ideas)
I Live in a Smoke Control Area; Does This Affect Me?
The only woodburning domestic heating appliance you can install and use if you live in a smoke-controlled zone must be exempt by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA). These stoves are independently tested to meet strict criteria on emissions.
The rules will remain the same from 1 January 2022, but Ecodesign means that if you are buying a new stove to use in a smoke-controlled area, this must be DEFRA-exempt too.
You can read more about stoves for smoke-controlled zones here.
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