Clean Air And My Fireplace

We Can have it both ways . . .

There are two sides to most problems, and there certainly are to the debate over Fireplaces versus Clean Air. Both views are legitimate, but sometimes TV, radio and newspapers seem to act as though there is only one side.  And inasmuch as I have a fireplace and also love to breathe, I searched for help and began with calling the Police. And why not? They’re the very ones someone would call if they thought I was breaking a law.

The Police told me that the use of fireplaces is legal, but in order to protect the air and keep it clean, an effort  has been made to create Rules, and if people (and that means me, and that means you) will observe those Rules, the Police will never be needed.

The Yes or No for fireplace usage will be announced each day on Radio  and TV newscasts, but if missed, simply call 801-536-4000 to find out the “Yes or No” for the day. 

That number is for The Dept. of Environmental Quality, Division of Air Quality Control, and it is part of their ‘job’ to give us the info we need. They, same as a lot of us, like Clean Air, as well as  fireplaces, so keep their number on your mantel for quick use, and don’t hesitate, because that’s exactly what that number is for.

Yes, there are two sides to the problem  but the Rules are fair and square, and so, when you want a fire, first make that call, and then go ahead with what they tell you. But that Heart of the Home, a fireplace, is legal, and the Rules are for everyone’s well being. We all want Clean Air.

I had no fireplace when we built here in Murray. My husband had grown up with the chore of keeping the fireplace ashes cared for, and didn’t want those chores repeated for the rest of his life. But within a few years following his early death, I had men knocking out a huge hole in the east side of my living room wall, and within another week or two, I had a Fireplace. All mine. To not only enjoy, but to take care of the ashes as well and  I’ve never regretted my choice..

It hadn’t been a wonderful couple of weeks, however, because as soon as there was a big hole in my wall, there were  three (four, five, SIX!!!!) homeless cats that tride to make my home theirs, and though I could keep them out during the day, I had to sleep, and for almost two weeks those dang cats  spent their nights in my house. But even that finally ended, and soon I, and guests were eating an evening meal before my fire, and loving it. It truly did become the heart of my home.

Yes, in almost all art work of family and home, there is a fireplace. and I love the old war song, that Mama used to sing, with words of,  “Keep the home fires burning, While our hearts are yearning, and though our boys are far away, they dream of home.”

And I’ll ne’er forget one nippy evening when a man, taking his daily walk,  came to my door and thanked me for perfuming the air. He said, “One deep breath and I was a child again. The air smells like home, and I had to say ,  Thank You.”

That’s the power of a fireplace, changing a grown man into a child, and bringing that man/child to a stranger’s door, and I don’t forget.

And now, while there are no suggestions about the use of stoves, with no guilt,  using your fireplace is legal, and, by following the Rules, they are  no threat to our Clean Air. Those on both sides of the question are happy, so keep the number nearby, and again, it’s 801-536-4000. That way we’ll be keeping The Rules, enjoying our fire,  and also able to  breathe  clean air.

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