RESIDENT SPEAK: Shall we allow biomass burning during winter?
RESIDENT SPEAK: Shall we allow biomass burning during winter?
Suman Malik
RESIDENT SPEAK: Shall we allow biomass burning during winter?
Photo: CitySpidey

RESIDENT SPEAK: Shall we allow biomass burning during winter?

Dwarka: Man is burning biomass on earth since its existence. Growth of trees and grass is natural sustainable carbon neutral process. After growth, trees absorb carbon dioxide and it returns same carbon dioxide to atmosphere when it is burnt.

Fire is a natural, normal process in many ecosystems and is necessary to maintain a healthy forest environment and the diversity of plant and animal life.

Control fires also help to keep insects and disease under control by killing the pathogens infecting a wood. Unused waste and stored wood will be lost to insects and disease, if not burnt.

Significant storage of waste wood may cause accidental fires and it is better to burn for heating and cooking. 

After burning, biomass produces course particles in air (PM 10) and can travel as little as a hundred meters or as much as 50 km. PM 2.5 particles go even farther; many hundreds of kilometers. So biomass burning particle settle in small area due to weight and not spoil the environment. 

PM 10 particles in small numbers are not dangerous for humans. Fine PM 2.5 particles produced from oil and gas are very dangerous to human, spread over large area and hang in large atmospheric area. 

Unlike fossil fuels, biomass burning does not produce gases such as sulphur dioxide, methane, ammonia. Ash is further used for cleaning of utensils.

From birth of earth, every year, millions of acres burn in wild fires around the globe but there is no damage to earth or environment. It is very common in USA and Canada.

In my opinion, waste wood, dry leaves and dairy waste, natural fiber clothes can be burnt whereas paper, card board, hard board, ply, sunmica, plastic, thermocol, rubber, polyester, nylon or any synthetic materials should not be burnt. 

We should say no to electric heaters also because 70  per cent of our electricity is produced by thermal plants by burning coal and producing carbon dioxide. Electricity from renewable sources are ok.

Coal, oil and gas are reserves (stored) of carbon dioxide and are not sustainable. Their burning is bad for environment and humans.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are his own and CitySpidey does not endorse them in anyway.