Don’t light that fire

November 29, 2013 

The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District says our air is so bad that we can’t burn wood in our fireplaces in Stanislaus and San Joaquin counties. It’s because of particulate matter, or stuff in the air, such as the dust kicked up during the nut harvest. Most of it, though, comes from wood smoke, and most of that comes from chimneys.

Such restrictions irritate a lot of people, especially those who realize that similar restrictions don’t apply to Bay Area residents whose fireplace pollution often blows over into the valley.

If you are among the irritated, please consider the small news story that appeared in Thursday’s editions of The Modesto Bee. It noted that in China, even barbecuing is being outlawed in an effort to cut the horrendous air pollution around Beijing. It’s one thing to refrain from lighting a fire, but at least a few of us consider barbecuing our turkeys a constitutional right.

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