‘Burn Cleaner, Burn Better’ Campaign Kicks Off

Press Release
Air Quality
Monday, December 5, 2016

Officials from the Maricopa County Air Quality Department (MCAQD) and the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) announced the kickoff of their annual Maricopa County winter air quality ‘Burn Cleaner, Burn Better’ campaign.

This year MCAQD and ADEQ are asking residents and businesses to work together to improve our air quality by choosing to use cleaner, healthier and environmentally friendly alternatives to burning wood when possible, such as electric or gas fireplaces.

Smoke from wood burning fireplaces and chimineas during winter months poses a serious health threat to children with asthma, the elderly and those with respiratory issues. Soot particles can be absorbed into the blood stream and may lessen lung function, exacerbate bronchitis and asthma and increase chances for heart attacks and premature death.

“The Burn Cleaner, Burn Better campaign is a unique public health and environmental partnership among business leaders, air quality agencies and our community,” said ADEQ Air Quality Division Director Timothy S. Franquist. “Not only does this collaboration benefit the health and welfare of valley residents, but it also works to ensure that the federal government doesn’t impose stricter regulations on valley businesses and residents.”

Maricopa County is also offering residents the opportunity to participate in a free program that will help keep our air cleaner and our residents healthy. The Maricopa County Fireplace Retrofit Program (MCFRP) is a pilot program designed to reduce smoke/PM2.5 pollution. The program will at no charge to the homeowner, retrofit a wood burning fireplace with an air pollution reduction device or with a natural gas log set, if the home meets installation requirements.

“The poor air quality that we experience during the winter months is the direct result of burning wood throughout the community,” Maricopa County Air Quality Director Philip McNeely said. “The spirit of the season compels us to be good neighbors and cognizant of the impacts our actions have on others. Please, Burn Cleaner, Burn Better and respect No Burn Day restrictions.”

If federal health standards are exceeded, Maricopa County and its residents run the risk of increased and costly federal regulations, which impact our lives and economy.

MCAQD issues No Burn Days throughout the winter season and asks county residents to refrain from lighting wood burning fires on those designated days. To find out if it is a No Burn Day, visit CleanAirMakeMore.com, download the Clean Air Make More mobile app or call 602-506-6400.

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Contact Information

ADEQ provides a daily forecast for air quality and issues HPAs or health watches when these conditions exist. Please call 602-771-2367 for tomorrow’s forecast or subscribe to receive air quality forecasts via email and/or text message.

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Contact: Caroline Oppleman – 602-771-2215 desk/602-540-8072 cell

MCAQD - The Maricopa County Air Quality Department (MCAQD) is a regulatory agency whose goal is to ensure federal clean air standards are achieved and maintained for the residents and visitors of Maricopa County. The department is governed by the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors and follows air quality standards set forth by the federal Clean Air Act. The department offers air quality information and resources on its Clean Air Make More website.

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Contact: Bob Huhn – 602-506-6713 desk/602-526-7307 cell

Support Burn Cleaner, Burn Better Campaign via Social Media

Website: CleanAirMakeMore.com

Facebook: @CleanAirMakeMore @AZDEQ

Twitter: @CleanAirMakeMor @Arizonadeq

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