Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications Eamon Ryan has announced new standards for domestic solid fuels, which will be implemented within a year.
After the standards are introduced, the most polluting of fuels will no longer be available on the Irish market.
With 1,300 people dying every year as a result of air pollution from solid fuel burning, Eamon Ryan stated, “We received more than 3,500 responses across all strands of the consultation, with a wide variety of suggested regulatory approaches for solid fuels.”
The new standards that will be introduced in 2022 for solid fuels in Ireland are as follows:
All coal and coal-based products, manufactured solid fuel or peat briquettes will be required to have a smoke emission rate of less than 10kg an hour, reducing to 5kg by 2025.
Biomass products that contain coal will not be affected as their smoke emission rate is already set at 5kg an hour.
The sulphur content of all fuels will be reduced from 2% to 1% over time.
Wood that is sold in single units of 2m³ must have a moisture content of 25% or less, which will reduce to 20% within four years.
Wet wood sold in these volumes will be required to come with instructions on how to dry the wood.
Those who have the right to harvest sod peat will not be banned from burning the fuel, however, a regulatory regime to reduce its harm in more urbanised areas is being examined.