Winter Spare the Air Alert Issued for Thursday December 12th

December 11, 2013 17:02 pm · 50 comments


The Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) has issued the ninth Spare the Air alert of the season, banning wood burning on Thursday Dec. 12th.

The following information is from the BAAQMD:

Wood burning is banned both indoors and outdoors tomorrow, Thursday December 12, 2013.

Air quality in the Bay Area is forecast to be unhealthy. It is illegal for Bay Area residents to burn wood or other solid fuels in fireplaces, wood stoves and inserts, pellet stoves, outdoor fire-pits, or other wood-burning devices.

This wood-burning ban will be in effect for Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, southern Sonoma and southwestern Solano Counties.

Winter air pollution is mainly caused by particulates or soot pollution from wood smoke. Smoke from wood-burning fires is linked to illnesses such as asthma, bronchitis and lung disease, and is especially harmful for children and the elderly.

For more information about the Wood Burning Rule, or to check before you burn, visit or call 1-877-4NO-BURN.

You can also call 1-800-430-1515 and register to receive automatic phone calls when a Winter Spare the Air Alert has been called.

To see the current air quality forecast visit

Visit the Apple App Store to download our FREE Spare the Air iPhone application for alert notifications, local air quality forecasts, podcasts and several tools to help reduce air pollution!

Thank you for doing your part to Spare the Air!

This AirAlert is provided by your Bay Area Air Quality Management District.


1 Jerk December 11, 2013 at 5:13 PM

This Just In: Due to last nights unforeseen fire, the rest of 2013 and all of 2014 will be STAD.
Merry Christnaka,

2 Keith December 11, 2013 at 5:13 PM

Here come the fire wussies……turn on the heater, grab a blanket, wear warm clothing and enjoy the evening.

3 Dumbfounded December 11, 2013 at 5:15 PM

This really has to stop

4 KenInConcord December 11, 2013 at 5:32 PM

I love that their own air quality index tells them how dirty the air will be and when to declare, So if it doesn’t reach that level then they take credit for the cleanliness of the air!!

My computer model shows that it will snow 12″ of snow tonight in Concord! —THEREFORE I will perform the Indian anti-snow dance.

My dances have saved Claycord Community from 7 Floods, 15 feet of snow and several major earthquakes!!!

5 Anonymous December 11, 2013 at 5:54 PM

Kenin Concord:

Excellent work, saving the City from calamity. Making fun of the BAAQMD for using quasi science will get you…nowhere.

Day before yesterday the wind was 10 MPH with high wind warnings on the Benicia Bridge. Their response: We dont channge the burn ban once we enact it.

If you want the name of a person that makes the final decision on bans, dont ask, ’cause they wont tell. State Secret doncha know?

6 Killjoy December 11, 2013 at 5:56 PM

Why don’t they tell us when we CAN burn? That way, we’ll have fewer notices from them.

7 Donna Summersault December 11, 2013 at 5:57 PM

KenInConcird, thank you for your services. The countless lives you have saved will never know you, but they love you.

8 Donna Summersault December 11, 2013 at 5:58 PM

Has anyone ever been cited for burning a fire on one of these Save The Air You Damn Hippy days?

9 Jojo potato December 11, 2013 at 6:01 PM

Free phone app? No thanks, just another way you can track me. Why don’t you have twitter feed or snapchat stream too? Just get out of my life!!!

10 I @ I think I have supernatural powers... December 11, 2013 at 6:04 PM

Your powers are undeniable.

11 the other jj December 11, 2013 at 6:09 PM

wow,, what a joke..starting a fire right now,, go get fu____!!

12 Cassandra December 11, 2013 at 6:15 PM

We don’t burn fires, and even if we needed to, my husband is so warm blooded, he’d but it out immediately.

I understand why people like having a fire, especially if their house is older with thinner insulation.

They say it’s supposed to warm up. We shall see!

13 Here's the Trick December 11, 2013 at 6:18 PM

Here’s the trick. In the fine print on the spare the air website it reads “Fires for cooking are not prohibited during Winter Spare the Air Alerts, but we ask the public to be mindful of air quality…”. So, have a nice big fire, just make sure you have marshmallows and sticks close by if the doorbell rings. Problem solved.

14 Bosco December 11, 2013 at 6:30 PM

Stupid me!!!! I gave up smoking because
it bothered other people. I don’t make a
fire in the fireplace on STA days. When I
had a gardner, I gave them the day off if
it was a STA day. Out of consideration for
others I made every attempt to be a good citizen.
Based on the comments I’ve read on these
Claycord STA alerts, I can see now
the people I was “considering” are a trash
heap of human

15 Bobfshed December 11, 2013 at 6:33 PM

Well over 2/3 of the PM 2.5 in the air comes from sources other than wood fires. Almost all of the “bad” air that some of you talk about does not come from wood fires. The data is available from BAAQMD.

16 Carlos Castaneda December 11, 2013 at 6:36 PM

Don Juan and I will have a campfire tonight at Our Peyote Ceremony….no matter what!

17 DeltaDog December 11, 2013 at 6:40 PM

@Jojo Potato. Seriously! Who would want
that! You know they are tracking you. I
have doubts about Claycord’s cookies, also.
Unless I delete their cookies regularly I
start getting bizarre popups.

18 Aunt Aginist December 11, 2013 at 6:44 PM

We stopped burning a couple years ago.
In an area this densely populated it is the
right thing to do.

19 Miguel December 11, 2013 at 6:52 PM

I don’t even think of Spare the Air days, but from what I’ve read, people are pretty fired up about it, no pun intended.

We don’t have a fireplace, so even if I wanted one, it’s not going to happen.

Our house stays pretty warm, and we haven’t had to crank on the heat.

This weather is nothing compared to what people in some parts of the country have to deal with.

20 Kirk December 11, 2013 at 6:58 PM

I cooked a tri tip on Sunday, love mesquite charcoal.

You know if these clowns spent as much time looking for meth labs as they did for duraflame logs out country would be a lot better off.

21 Anonymous December 11, 2013 at 7:13 PM

Na, dont answer the door. Ignore them. They are not cops and its a civil violation, not criminal

22 Bobfshed December 11, 2013 at 7:13 PM

There are between 5 and 6 million cars and trucks in the San Francisco BayArea. The number may even be close to 7 million! Want to know where your “bad air” is coming from. It’s not coming from burning wood. At some point these folks will have to acknowledge that wood burning is not the problem. The data proves it.

23 Triple Canopy December 11, 2013 at 7:48 PM

I’ve been smoking three chickens and a leg of lamb for the last eight hours… like hell I’m gonna turn it off.


24 Silva December 11, 2013 at 8:27 PM

@aunt Aginist & Bosco,

Thank You!
I appreciate your kind consideration.

25 D-SHOT December 11, 2013 at 8:49 PM

Hey BOSCO. Can I get a burger? I’ll cook it myself over my fire. then drive around town in my Diesel eating it.


26 Bobfshed December 11, 2013 at 9:10 PM

As long as you live in the Bay Area you will have summer spare the air days and winter spare the air nights.
If you think stopping wood fires will stop spare the air days or nights you are not well informed.

27 vindex December 11, 2013 at 9:54 PM

This is just sad. We have yielded our freedoms to this group. The are put there by local city councils. Vote out the councils for starting this group and we will get change.

28 #14, #17, #18, #24 frauds December 11, 2013 at 10:02 PM

#14, #17, #18, & #24 all have the same strange narrow margins and appear to be the same person, on the same device, trying to make it seem like a whole bunch of people support their opinion. Weird…

29 DeltaDog December 11, 2013 at 10:22 PM

Last night it was so bad you could smell
the wood smoke in the house with the
windows closed.

30 Pro Fi December 11, 2013 at 10:41 PM

@ BOSCO – You Rock!!
Lately every time I come on here I feel like throwing up. Claycord is no better then Pittsburg Bay Point or Antioch…. same mentality. Anybody feel like making the rounds… think I might start up a citizens patrol. Kinda like a neighborhood watch program for STA Days. All it takes is one driver and one person on the laptop….

31 Elwood December 11, 2013 at 11:18 PM

The BAAQMD ad is the first thing you see after the weather at the top of the left hand column.

Do you think there could be a link between that ad and the extensive coverage of STAD on Claycord?

32 Pro Fi December 12, 2013 at 12:02 AM

Maybe Mr. Mayor is just trying to bring us the latest news… for those of us that care. WAAAHHAAAAHAAAAAA
The great AIR conspiracy of 2013

33 Cowellian December 12, 2013 at 7:12 AM

And what a grand conspiracy it is!

The Mayor is in the business of getting people to talk about events in Claycord, and every time he posts a STAD story, a whole lot of people join the conversation.

And STAD has figured out that one of the best ways of telling people about Spare the Air Days is to let Claycord know about them.

34 Silva December 12, 2013 at 8:51 AM

How silly. I, (#24), am not a fraud. And I’m actually glad to know that I’m not the only one out here who’s affected negatively by wood smoke. It’s not the only offender, but it’s a BIG problem. And it’s so thick in the winter you can cut it. And it does come inside my house, through my heavily insulated walls and double paned windows somehow. Last summer I had to stay indoors due to what came over from Bejing, this winter I can’t breathe due to this local issue. Yes, I’m whining, but I’m having breathing issues. Every breath I take is uncomfortable!

35 Silva December 12, 2013 at 9:13 AM

It hadn’t occurred to me to rat out my neighbors before, but after reading some of the posts on this issue I don’t know why. Some of you in your face flaunter of the rules might want think about it.

36 Just to Help Silva December 12, 2013 at 9:21 AM

Silva – Seriously….move. It should be a consideration. Not being mean…but if you can’t leave your house in this wonderland of the East Bay….you should research where you could live and make it happen.

Don’t be a victim…act and enjoy life.

37 Bobfshed December 12, 2013 at 10:31 AM

You can not live in an area that has millions of people, cars, oil refineries etc… and expect to have clean air. Clean air and millions of people just won’t happen no matter how much you rat on someone for having a wood fire. You must understand that mst of the pollution does not come fom wood fires! It’s a fact!

38 Bobfshed December 12, 2013 at 10:46 AM

Even if there was a total ban on wood fires there would still be STAD! Both in the summer and winter. What is banned during the summer on STAD? Nothing! What is banned in the winter during STAD? Only wood fires used to heat homes.
My neighbor turned me in for having a wood fire, I turned him in for his dogs barking all the time, my other neighbor tuned me in for having my garbage cans exposed, I turned him in for wasting water. The neighbor across the street was turned in for having his RV exposed, he turned his neighbor in for to many Xmas lights. I turned my neighbor in because his car drip a few drops of oil in the street, he called the police on me when I was having a summer BBQ and he didn’t like the smell of the BBQ………………
I turned Valero in for polluting the environment, they fired me!

39 Incognito December 12, 2013 at 10:47 AM

I love having a fire in my fireplace on these cold nights! It’s unfortunate we’ve had so many spare the air days, but I’ve seen this coming for years. You no longer see homes being built with “real” fireplaces here in California. They’re being phased out. Just one more thing due to an over-populated Bay Area.

I abide by the spare the air day reports even though I am not happy about not having a fire when it’s dipping to 25 at night. I am also not about to make a phone call to report anyone who is having a fire when they are not supposed to. It’s my opinion if BAAQMD wants to impose these spare the air day regulations (or whatever they call them) then they better hire the manpower to enforce it when it comes down to issuing their fines.

40 Bobfshed December 12, 2013 at 11:10 AM

One of the best ideas I have heard is that a new .50 cent tax per gallon of gas is going to be imposed on folks buying gas in the Bay Area to fund clean air programs. This will actually help clean the air better than no wood fires.

41 Silva December 12, 2013 at 11:32 AM

I actually have another home. Right on the bay! The air is usually so much cleaner there, too. I don’t need two houses though. And each has it’s pluses & minuses. I grew up here in the Concord house, but this air quality may be the tipping point. You can’t even see our beautiful mountain today from anywhere I drove locally today. Really sad.

42 Silva December 12, 2013 at 11:56 AM

@Bobfshed, that’s a load of money! Do you know what’s being proposed as far as what measures it will me used for?

43 Bobfshed December 12, 2013 at 12:29 PM

I haven’t heard what they will use the money for yet. I know that it is in the early stages and there is quite a bit of push back going on from the oil companies.

44 Bobfshed December 12, 2013 at 1:08 PM

Tomorrow, Friday s another STAD. No wood fires for five days and the air is still bad. If you still think the air is bad because of wood fires then you are not a critical thinker.
The problems you are having due to the air is caused by the burning of petroleum. What are you going to do about it so that your breathing problems are improved?

45 Bobfshed December 12, 2013 at 1:21 PM

Air Pollutants that Trigger Asthma

So you can be informed. You will notice that wood smoke is only mentioned once. One in five Americans live within10 miles ofa coal fired power plant that is used to generate electricity so you can power your home.

It’s not the wood that she problem!,,,,,,, Read!

Ground Level Ozone: A toxic component of smog, ozone triggers asthma attacks and makes existing asthma worse. It may also lead to the development of asthma in children. Ozone is produced at ground level when tailpipe pollution from cars and trucks reacts with oxygen and sunlight. Ground level ozone is a big problem in cities with lots of traffic, such as Los Angeles, Houston and New York City. In 2004, according to the American Lung Association, 136 million people lived in areas that violated ozone air quality standards.

Sulfur Dioxide (SO2 ): A respiratory irritant associated with the onset of asthma attacks, sulfur dioxide is produced when coal and crude oil are burned. Coal-fired power plants, particularly older plants that burn coal without SO2 pollution controls, are the worst SO2 polluters. One in five Americans lives within 10 miles of a coal-fired power plant. Oil refineries and diesel engines that burn high-sulfur fuel also release large amounts of SO2 into the air.i

Particulate Matter: This term refers to a wide range of pollutants — dust, soot, fly ash, diesel exhaust particles, wood smoke and sulfate aerosols — which are suspended as tiny particles in the air. Some of these fine particles can become lodged in the lungs and could trigger asthma attacks. Studies have shown that the number of hospitalizations for asthma increases when levels of particulate matter in the air rise. Coal-fired power plants, factories and diesel vehicles are major sources of particulate pollution. Around 81 million people live in areas that fail to meet national air quality standards for particulate matter.

Nitrogen oxide (NOx): A gas emitted from tailpipes and power plants, nitrogen oxide contributes to the formation of ground-level ozone and smog. It also reacts with other air pollutants to form small particles that can cause breathing difficulties, especially in people with asthma.
Watching Out for Bad Air Days

46 Silva December 12, 2013 at 2:16 PM

Blechh. Thanks! I’m sure you’re right. As to that .50 cents per gallon, if it wern’t imposed we’d never vote for it of course. Well not most of us, I mean. We sure do need a solution here.

47 Only a Tax December 12, 2013 at 4:22 PM

@Silva #46
If we increased taxes by 100%, would all the problems be solved?

48 Not PC ever December 12, 2013 at 4:25 PM

@DeltaDog December 11, 2013 at 10:22 PM –

I think some people have fires on these days just to tweak the Spare the Air Nazis. I do know that I smell the delicious smell of wood smoke more on those days when they ban the burning. That can’t be coincidence.

I have COPD but I use my rotohaler as I should and I have zero problems.

49 DeltaDog December 12, 2013 at 7:24 PM

It’s call “touch typing” with “carriage
return” … an educated typist. The kind
of typist who used to work for somebody
else. Now everybody has to “hunt and peck”
for themselves. It is a method once taught in
school … no gigantic conspiracy.

50 Pro Fi December 12, 2013 at 8:30 PM

My point was that not following the rules is not following the rules… PERIOD. Do I want to create problems w/ my neighbors… absolutely not. We have a system…. we talk and negotiate with each other. And I have to say, there are no houses in my immediate area that I have seen burning.
It’s called a social contract and it is what keeps us civilized.

The fact of the matter is… wood burning fires may not be the largest contributor to bad air but they certainly don’t help. You are not going to shut down the transportation; food and all the other businesses that contribute to the problem. Doing that would mean most of us wouldn’t be able to go to work. Public transit & no fire days simply decrease the load… no matter how small the significance. The problem is, we really don’t know how much better the air quality could be because they are too many people that aren’t willing to comply. #1 Problem with America – the ME rather then the WE mentality.

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