There are only ever trade offs

“Ecodesign” wood burning stoves produce 450 times more toxic air pollution than gas central heating, according to new data published in a report from Prof Chris Whitty, the chief medical officer for England.

Older stoves, now banned from sale, produce 3,700 times more, while electric heating produces none, the report said.

Ain’t no such thing as a solution, only a series of trade offs. Which form of pollution would you prefer, Sirs?

31 thoughts on “There are only ever trade offs”

  1. “while electric heating produces none, the report said”

    All part of the plan to:

    A) Force you to use electric, then
    B) Starve you of electricity

    Prof Chris Whitty still being able to show his ugly face in public is a sad indictment of our lion-poor society.

  2. Gosh, so the electricity in my wall socket produces no pollution. Let’s have loads more wall sockets then!

  3. I don’t often sit on the roof inhaling the exhaust from my chimney. Because I would expect to have breathing difficulties if I did. Maybe Whitty and his pals have been sniffing something that causes hardness of thinking.

  4. Strangely enough, BiC, they’re actually right on this. One of the larger worldwide killers is people using wood fires for cooking in the home. And if you’ve ever lived somewhere where wood burning is a necessity rather than a middle class affectation you’d know how filthy the house gets. Sure, if you spend a great deal of money on one of these Ecodesign stoves, most of it goes up the chimney. But then other people are breathing it. Of course one middle-class tosser is survivable. Half a mile away from their house you can hardly smell wood smoke at all. Try living somewhere where every house is doing it because there aren’t any other options

  5. It’s wonderful that electricity is such a clean ‘fuel’! No combustion products sully my house, so that’s just fine.
    I did notice a plume rising from a electrical power station recently, but assumed it was just harmless water vapour – surely ‘they’ wouldn’t lie to us about this?

  6. It’s the same as that largely female middle class affectation for lighting bloody candles at every opportunity. The reason a candle or oil lamp provides illumination is insufficient combustion of carbon. It ends up in the air as a particulate along with a lot of other evil substances. Try going somewhere where they’ve used candles & oil lamps because there was no other option. And look at the filth on the walls & ceilings. Usually they’re places with a high prevalence of respiratory diseases.

  7. BIS

    Clearly you’re a member of the mansplaining patriarchy. Candles provoke release of accumulated toxins from the body of the female burning them, as well as reducing stress and improving wealth, health and sexual attractiveness.

  8. BiS – Try living somewhere where every house is doing it because there aren’t any other options

    Midsomer Murders, but the Aga did it.

    Anyway, it’ll be a frosty day in Hell before the missus gives up her Rayburn. I think she’d literally compost Swampy first.

  9. Here in my Swedish city suburb half of the houses are burning wood for heating. Electricity is simply too expensive not to. (We either have electric heat exchangers or are connected to the city heating – which burns wood pellets)
    The first autumn chill you start smelling wood smoke in the air…

  10. BiS – Try living somewhere where every house is doing it because there aren’t any other options

    I do pretty much…

    In my village most people burn wood for heating in Winter with Diesel coming a close second. I’ve good a pellet burner. The air is full of wood smoke.

    I’d assumed (I didn’t read it) that being the Groaniad CO2 would be the villain.

  11. “There’s a big difference in my view between having a very dense urban area with everybody using wood burning and someone doing it in a rural area where it is essentially them, their family and a lot of sheep,” Whitty said.

    Guess that lets me off the hook.

  12. @BiC
    I spent some time in a French valley suffered a nasty infestation of Brit second homers. The local firewood suppliers were doing a roaring trade. Evenings in late autumn you could see the woodsmoke lid forming. There’s a reason the French sold all their hovels at extortionate prices & moved to double glazed newbuild.

  13. Does Whitty have any clever opinions on the health implications of putting millions of people under house arrest for a flu, or do I need to get Simba in here?

  14. ‘Which form of pollution would you prefer, Sirs?’

    Since we’re talking about the Greens, I naturally feel they’d make excellent bio-fuel.

  15. @BiS

    ‘ I’d assumed (I didn’t read it) that being the Groaniad CO2 would be the villain.’

    Yes of course, but much, much more which cause respiratory tract irritation & diseases. Particulates – carbon, aka soot, but others include nitrogen oxides, sulphur dioxide, aldehydes, mold spores, methane, acids, chlorine, bromine, lead, carbon monoxide… it is a long list depending on what is being burnt.

  16. I note the little homunculus wants the public to ‘scold’ those who leave their engine running in traffic too. He wasn’t so keen when members of the public took the opportunity to scold him for his Covid actions, was he?

  17. The report estimated 26,000 to 38,000 deaths a year from outdoor air pollution.

    With a range like that I’d like to see an estimate of deaths due to drowning in bullshit.

  18. it is a long list depending on what is being burnt.
    Yeah. I’ve heard of people putting a demolished timber outbuilding or salvaged offcuts through a woodstove. Not stopping to think about timber treatments…

  19. The difference between types of stove is ten times the difference between types of wood. Pull the other one.

    “If you don’t do as I say, we’re all gonna DIE!!!!” Yes, Professor, but not all at once. So, after you…

  20. But don’t worry about the fine details: burning wood releases carbon dioxide into the air.

    Just like burning coal. Or oil. or gas.
    Coal and oil are the materials of Satan Himself.
    Thus wood must be as well.

    Were the eco-loons to be even slightly coherent, they would ban all wood-burning everywhere.

  21. “Were the eco-loons to be even slightly coherent, they would ban all wood-burning everywhere.”

    I doubt it. Sitting around the campfire singing kumbaya is an eco-loon’s rite of passage.

  22. “While electric heating produces none, the report said”

    “While electric heating produces none AT THE POINT OF USE, is what the report SHOULD have said”

    But let’s not let facts get in the way shall we “Prof” Whitty…

  23. “Sitting around the campfire singing kumbaya is an eco-loon’s rite of passage.”

    In my experience the eco-loons are not included in the campfire circle.
    They complain incessantly, and never bring any meat ( or much of anything for that matter..).

    And they’re bitter and stringy, so there’s not even good eatin’ on them even in a pinch.

  24. Blimey. I thought with the price of leccie and gas going insane, these people might lay off the wood-burners for a bit, but no, they never give up, do they?

    I suspect their actual grip with woodstoves is that wood can’t be taxed, or centrally controlled – nothing enrages these people more than the parasite class not getting their cut.

    As for 30,000 people in the UK dying from air pollution or whatever the figure was, I say “show us the death certificates!”. I simply don’t believe it; I suspect this is either extrapolation from some wild guess of something, or else dodgy computer modelling a la Neil Ferguson.

    They can prise my log burner from my cold dead fingers.

  25. Bandwagon jumping? Just last night on The Archers characters were discussing going out in the local woods and gathering treefall. “Why should the beetles have them, we could heat our home with that.”

  26. As for 30,000 people in the UK dying from air pollution or whatever the figure was, I say “show us the death certificates!”. I simply don’t believe it; I suspect this is either extrapolation from some wild guess of something, or else dodgy computer modelling a la Neil Ferguson.

    It’s the LNT (Linear No Threshold) model used to scare people about radiation, i.e. cobblers.

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