Government to Axe Old Style Burners to Improve Air Quality

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Sarah Peddie

New Zealand Government are set to crack down on old style wood and coal-fueled burners in a bid to improve the country’s air quality.

Even though New Zealand’s air quality is high, the Associate Environment Minister Nanaia Mahuta said there were areas of the country where there are still an issue, especially during winter time. 

She continued to say that these issues could lead to severe health impacts which include: shortness of breath, chest pain and heart disease and even premature death.

The Government is now looking to tackle this issue by getting rid of all solid fuel fires that are older style wood or coal-fueled fireplaces. 

The plan is, for the residents that have these older heating facilities, to keep using them until they reach the end of their life. When they have reached that stage, the residents must replace them with new, lower-emitting burners.

The changes that will be put in place won’t affect the majority of New Zealanders as 90 percent of the heating appliances on the market already meet the proposed standard. 

Nanaia Mahuta added that with the plan in place, roughly $820 million would be saved on healthcare costs over the next 10 years.

A two month consultation on the plan will run until 24 April.

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