Carbon Credentials


 

Looking out of the window at yet another grey, soggy day, it’s hard not to feel depressed about the probability that the extremes of weather experienced in 2011, in the UK as well as worldwide, have been caused, at least in part, by man’s reliance on fossil fuels.

Carbon credentials woodfuel coop

So burning wood instead of coal or oil makes ecological sense, then? Well, not always.

We have a lot of trees here in Scotland but only a small proportion of our burning fuel comes from the faster grown softwoods. Hardwoods, in particular those mature and beautiful ash and oak trees that grow well here, provide much better logs for the fire or stove…and if they are taken from trees that have fallen or reached the end of their lives, AND are properly dried to a low moisture content, then the carbon footprint of logging them is relatively low…BUT, the ecological impact can be more severe.

However, there is a more eco-friendly, carbon-friendly way to fuel your stove, which is by using recycled timber products and sourcing them as close to home as you can. This is what the Wood Fuel Co-operative is doing, whilst also striving to obtain top quality, efficient fuels that are affordable and give out the heat you want.
Unfortunately we still have to source a couple of our products from abroad, simply because a fuel of comparable quality isn’t yet produced locally. We hope, though, that by creating and expanding the market for recycled wood briquettes and pellets, we will encourage local businesses to start producing their own versions of, say, the bark briquettes, thus working alongside us to keep on reducing our collective carbon footprint.

So here’s to a more carbon-friendly, environmentally-sound and toasty-warm 2012!

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Quick guide to choosing the best Wood Fuel for your stove and lifestyle.

Wood Fuel Co-operative
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*Break - We strongly recommend you break these briquettes in half (or less for very small stoves) because they do expand whilst burning and you don't want them to overfill the fire.
*Easy to light - We always use a Firelighter and Kindling Sticks to start our fires. Most briquettes are graded four stars to light because they are quite dense and require kindling.

Notes:

  • All stove and flue combinations tend to have different burning characteristics. Fuel that works well in my stove may not work so well in your stove, and vice-versa.
  • Most modern stoves are more efficient than most older stoves, meaning a modern quality stove will burn fuel more economically and generate more heat over a longer period.
  • Always try to burn fuel with a 'lick of flame'. Smouldering fuel to try to extend burn time is bad for your stove, flue and the environment due to unburned particulate matter in the smoke.
  • Be prepared to break briquettes into smaller sections to fit into your stove comfortably. Many briquettes do expand whilst burning and you don't want them to expand onto the glass.
  • The chart above indicates which briquettes are easy to break. Some are small enough so they don't need breaking. This makes for a cleaner environment around your stove.
  • All briquettes, except Everyday Value and Hotmax, benefit hugely from using kindling to light them. I suggest five kindling sticks will be sufficient, meaning a net should last 30 days.

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