It only takes common sense to know that excessive inhalation of smoke is not good for anyone. But, out of political expediency, some opponents of the fire rings have latched onto the idea that ALL the fire rings in Newport Beach should be converted to “charcoal-only” rings – citing health and environmental. (never mind that these SAME people have complained in the media in years past about outsiders and their “loud singing” around the fire rings).
The following dispels why the notion of “charcoal-only” and supporting the charcoal industry’s products is not necessarily the best for our health or environment. Besides, numerous studies and articles explaining how charcoal production involves deforestation on massive scales to provide for manufacturing and “carbonizing” of wood. While the wood is converted into charcoal at these huge manufacturing plants, harmful chemicals and emissions are created. Many believe the emissions alone have a significant effect on ozone depletion.
Some of the by-products of charcoal production are pryroacids, primary acetic acid and Methanol, tars, heavy oils and water. The air emissions include ethane (C2H2) ,carbon monoxide (CO), carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), ethane (C2H2) and volatile organic compound (VOC),
After production, some of the by-products of charcoal burning (e.g. in a backyard barbecue or in a fire ring) include: particulate matter, Carbon monoxide, Nitrogen and Sulphate Oxides and other volatile compounds.
Apart from the emission during production which are significant, particulate matter, Carbon monoxide, Nitrogen and Sulphate Oxides and other volatile compounds are also emitted during charcoal burning
Bottom line: whether one is burning untreated wood or charcoal at the beach, most people know that they should not inhale the smoke (e,g. simply move as the winds shift), and enjoy the beauty of the fire ring and company of friends.
WHY “CHARCOAL-ONLY” WILL LEAD TO LESS PEOPLE USING THE NEWPORT BEACH PUBLIC STATE BEACHES. The most recent program by the City of Newport Beach to reduce attendance from outsiders at the beach, while claiming to be in compliance with new AQMD rules, is to restrict the fire rings to “Charcoal-only.” PLEASE CLICK HERE to print out a copy of the Coastal Commission letter which tells Newport Beach their Charcoal-only ordinance still needs a CDP an approval from the Coastal Commission. Rather than making an effort for a more reasonable interim program that allows beach-goers freedom of choice, such as a.) designating some rings for wood, and some rings for charcoal, and/or b.) simply spreading the fire rings out a bit to easily stay in compliance with the AQMD’s and the Coastal Commission rules – city councilmembers continue to stubbornly refuse to act with common sense. By limiting to “Charcoal-only” they have effectively created a disincentive for people to use the fire rings and the beach. They know charcoal is too costly, and cannot create a bonfire experience – so fewer people will come to the beach over time. This is exactly what they have wanted all along!
But – the Newport Beach City Council continues to ignore the will of their own Newport Beach residents. Our recent survey, completed on June 23, 2014, shows that 89.7% of Newport Beach residents believe “that the city council should leave the fire rings alone.” And – 78.7% Newport Beach residents prefer wood over charcoal. And – 88.8% Newport Beach residents AND non-Newport residents say they would be “less likely to use the fire rings if you could only burn charcoal!”
By NOT enacting a common-sense interim solution – spreading out the fire rings and/or mixing use of wood and charcoal, the city will cleverly achieve it’s real agenda – reducing attendance at the beach from “outsiders.”
Here’s Why! ….
– Charcoal does not provide the same experience as wood. It does not provide enough warmth. It does not provide enough light at night. Lighter fluid is also dangerous and has gives off odors and fumes. People will prefer to go to other beaches that allow wood burning. Again – 88.8% surveyed said they will go to other beaches if the charcoal-only rule is allowed to be enforced.
– By law, public beaches are required to be low-cost forms of recreation for ALL Californians – so that everyone can afford to enjoy the beauty of the outdoors. This is why parking is only $15 for an entire day. By requiring beach-goers who wish to use the fire rings to pay a “usage fee.”
Furthermore, the city is currently promoting three “Acceptable” and expensive brands of charcoal at $13-$15 per bag in city brochures (usually multiple bags are needed per fire ring)- the city has effectively doubled and tripled the “fees’ for using the beaches! This is similar to doubling and tripling the cost of the $15 per day parking.
To make things worse – in their desperate efforts to lobby against Assembly Bill 1102, the city and its anti-fire activists are deceiving our State Legislators by telling them that AB 1102 is not necessary because with the “charcoal-only” rule “all is fine”… “everyone loves charcoal” … beach attendance “has never been higher”…
Absurd. Nothing could be further from the truth!…