As the world becomes more environmentally aware, it’s becoming more imperative that we change our own habits in line with our beliefs. There is only so much we can do if we don’t start by shaping our habits at home – the everyday things we can do might include walking instead of driving, recycling food, and using the heating less to save energy. For some time now, there has been an increase in the number of people choosing to heat their homes with sustainable fuels and wanting to rely less on the national grid and their own central heating. Being self sufficient is an idealist way of life for many.
Burning firewood is certainly a sustainable source of energy – it is renewable, as trees can be replanted and the earth won’t run out of trees if we manage sources effectively. By far the most effective way of heating a home with a fire is to use seasoned logs – ones that have been dried out so that what remains is a log that has a lower water content. Due to these lower moisture levels, the logs will burn for longer and will produce a more effective burn as well. You can choose hardwood, seasoned logs from many sources that will suit your fire perfectly.
Some sustainable and environmentally friendly sources of seasoned logs
These are some of the ways in which you can obtain seasoned logs that are environmentally friendly and that will have as little impact on the planet as possible:
- Buy from a company that meets all PEFC regulations. This is a non-governmental initiative, called the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification. It means that forests have been managed sustainably and trees are replanted in sufficient quantities, so your wood is coming from a reputable source. When you are buying from internet stores or local shops, look out for this PEFC certification.
- Season your own firewood. This will require some space to allow you to season the wood, but it is possible. Seasoned wood is essentially firewood that has been dried out, so if you are able to keep the wood and dry it out yourself, you will be able to create better fires. You will need a wood or log store to keep the wood dry, providing shelter so that it can dry out effectively. You will need to have enough time to season your wood, usually about a year. This means you will need a constant supply of wood that you are drying out, to keep you well stocked for the cold winter months.
- Talk to local businesses. You might be able to source seasoned wood that is a by product of other industries, such as gardening, landscaping and tree surgery. Often, people who run these kinds of businesses will end up with large amounts of wood and they won’t have anything they need to do with it, so they will season it themselves and sell it on. This means they can put timber to good use, and you can source local, sustainable seasoned logs.