Spare the Air alert issued for Monday

A Spare the Air Alert has been issued for Monday throughout the Bay Area, according to the Bay Area Air Quality Management District.

The alert for Monday prohibits burning wood, manufactured fire logs or any other solid fuel both indoors and outdoors for 24 hours, BAAQMD officials said.

The alert has been issued as cool, stagnant weather conditions are trapping wood smoke pollution near the ground throughout the region, causing unhealthy air quality, according to the BAAQMD.

The alert is the sixth of the winter season.

The air district’s Executive Officer Jack Broadbent said in a statement:

“The Lunar New Year coincides with the cold, still conditions that cause wood smoke pollution to build up…Wood smoke, combined with fireworks and firecrackers from the celebrations, is causing unhealthy air to be trapped in neighborhoods in the Bay Area.”

Exemptions for the alert are available only for homes without permanently installed heating, where woodstoves or fireplaces are the only source of heat. Anyone whose sole source of heat is a wood-burning device must use an Environmental Protection Agency-certified or pellet-fueled device that is register with the air district in order to qualify for the exemption.

Wood smoke from Bay Area fireplaces and wood stoves account for the single largest source of air pollution in the region and exposure to it has been linked to respiratory illnesses and increased risk of heart attacks, air district officials said.

For more information about the Spare the Air Alert rules, residents can visit sparetheair.org or call (877) 4NO-BURN (466-2876).