Scientists claim wood fired pizza is bad, saying baking it is ‘damaging to the urban environment’

From the ‘those are fighting words’ department and the UNIVERSITY OF SURREY. Just wait until they get a load of the “coal fired pizza” in Texas.

coal-fired-pizza

The pizza slice that comes at a price

Scientific report announces emerging risk caused by wood burning stoves in pizza restaurants and charcoal in steakhouses to the environment

A recent study has shown that emissions in major cities caused by restaurants such as pizzerias and steakhouses using wood burners can be damaging to the urban environment.

The findings published in the journalAtmospheric Environment points out the underlining pollution causes of the Latin American city of Sao Paulo in Brazil. This work is a collaborative effort by ten leading air pollution experts from seven universities, led by the University of Surrey’s Dr Prashant Kumar from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, under the umbrella of University Global Partnership Network (UGPN).

The Latin American megacity of São Paulo is the only megacity worldwide that uses a much cleaner bio-fuel driven fleet. With about 10% of Brazil’s total population, Sao Paulo’s inhabitants fill their vehicles with a biofuel comprising of sugarcane ethanol, gasohol (75% gasoline and 25% ethanol) and soya diesel.

Dr Kumar said: “It became evident from our work that despite there not being the same high level of pollutants from vehicles in the city as other megacities, there had not been much consideration of some of the unaccounted sources of emissions. These include wood burning in thousands of pizza shops or domestic waste burning.”

Despite feijoada (a pork and bean stew) being the often hailed Brazil’s national dish, pizza is revered by the residents of Sao Paulo. The ‘pizza day’ is celebrated every July and the neighbourhood pizzeria is the Sunday dinner with the family venue for most of the city’s residents. People of all ages line up for hours outside pizzerias every Sunday evening and the city is home to around 8,000 pizza parlours that produce close to a million pizzas a day and can seat up to around 600 people a time. In addition to the 800 pizzas a day being made using old-fashioned wood burning stoves, a further 1,000 a day are produced for home delivery, with Sunday being the busiest day of the week.

Dr Kumar continued, “There are more than 7.5 hectares of Eucalyptus forest being burned every month by pizzerias and steakhouses. A total of over 307,000 tonnes of wood is burned each year in pizzerias. This is significant enough of a threat to be of real concern to the environment negating the positive effect on the environment that compulsory green biofuel policy has on vehicles.”

Co-author Prof Maria de Fatima from the University of Sao Paulo added, “Although the huge number of passenger vehicles and diesel trucks are the dominant contributor to particle emissions, at least we understand the impact that this is having on the environment and can factor in solutions. The important contributions to particle emissions gained from burning of wood and the seasonal burning of sugar cane plantations need to be accounted in future studies as they are also significant contributors as a pollutant.”

pizza-fumes

This is an illustration of some of the sources of the air pollutants. CREDIT University of Surrey

Additional co-author Prof Yang Zhang from the North Carolina State University explained, “Once in the air, the emitted pollutants can undergo complex physical and chemical processes to form harmful secondary pollutants such as ozone and secondary aerosol. While most studies in Brazil have focused on impacts of vehicle emissions on air quality and human health, the impacts of emissions from wood/coal burning and meat-cooking in pizzerias and restaurants are yet to be quantified”

In addition, another part of the problem is the impact of the neighbouring Amazon rainforest. Biomass burning from the south southern edge of the forest can be transported across the Atlantic coast to Brazil and had to be included in the qualitative assessments of the city air pollution.

Citing this recent work, Dr Kumar, continued: “We believe that the contents of this new direction article provide an unprecedented approach in examining the adverse impact of air pollution in such a unique megacity as São Paulo.”

Professor Vince Emery, Senior Vice-President of Global Strategy and Engagement, University of Surrey commented: “This is another excellent example of how global challenges such as air pollution in cities need global networks to identify the problems and ultimately create innovative solutions”.

Paul Smith, Associate Dean in the Faculty of Engineering and Physical Sciences, University of Surrey added “It is great to see that the seed funding invested by UGPN partners has facilitated internationally co-authored work in such an important research area”.

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181 thoughts on “Scientists claim wood fired pizza is bad, saying baking it is ‘damaging to the urban environment’

  1. OMG, are you being serious? In the real world, these folks would be thought of as insane. This is vile and twisted thinking. Lock the lunatics up, toss the lot. Politically correct thinking is a legitimate mental illness disease.

    • what about farting in elevators? why is that not a hanging offence? Instead we get a study about how to get the government to pay for pizza’s delivered to your door.

      • Really? I thought the Germans liked decent food..

        And the ONLY way to get the best out of most red meat is with an open fire.

        They must really have WIMPED OUT to allow that to happen !!

        Maybe a remnant from WWII?

      • Actually, the Germans don’t like decent food, only decent beer. Germans normally prefer boring food.

  2. Sometimes I think the green loonies have a death wish. Fuking around with people’s pizza? — Eugene WR Gallun

    • Hey, I’m OK with a NG fired pizza oven. But they’re coming after my STEAK!

      That gets me looking at the ammo inventory…

      • The surest way to alienate the young generations is to take away their pizza. They would live on it if they could. Maybe threats to the pizza supply is a good thing. As for the steak…they can take my steak when they take my gun. :))

      • Bartheby — Had to pick myself up from the floor. Your the winner! Who can match your comment? — Eugene WR Gallun

      • Beauty Bartleby!

        Now waiting for someone to do the “they can pry my pizza from my the cold dead hands” number.

        Why use eucalyptus wood for pizza anyway? In Canada we have a few gazillion square miles of boreal forest – we can supply pizza ovens for literally billions of years into the future.

        Fear not, good people, your wood-fired pizza ovens are safe!

        Thank God for Canada! I mean, like, y’know, totally!

    • indeed..I ran a pizza bar for a while
      our power bill for the electric oven was humongous!
      it ate just about all the profit from the pizzas.
      and 7.5 acres a month of fast growing renewable Eucy wood to fire theirs, for so many ovens..
      whatta bargain ;-)

  3. Right, I’m going to organize a protest outside Chez Panisse, the fabulous and historic restaurant in Berkeley next week. Who’s in? Can we do it at 2:00pm, so I’ve had time to have a wonderful Pizzetta or Calzone, from their wonderful wood-fired oven, for lunch.

    Thinking of the lunches I’ve had there over the years, I might be a no-show, finishing up some excellent wine inside there, but go ahead without me please. We only have 90 days to save the planet.

    • oh lordy..Im already swearing at the lack of real taste and ingredients kids and young adults now suffer from..
      they have never tasted proper scalded cream on fresh home made bread with home made apricot jam..or fresh fruit from the tree not from a cold store.
      packet muck and frozen stuff full of gums fillers n soyfakery , jelly goo for sauces etc
      cake that tastes like nothing- choc flavouring not real cocoa in it. coloured with beetroot ffs!
      even vanilla is being faked by wood and gmo synth, honey chem flavour not honey..the list is growing daily.
      older gen saying they have lost their sense of taste..probably havent, the damn food substitute is why they cant taste anything…there is none.

      • bill johnston — We need to create a computer model of “real pizza”. We can alter ingredients, cooking methods, etc. and arrive at the perfect pizza. No real world data like taste tasting will be needed.

        It is only the beginning. I can see “the culinary art” being renamed “the culinary science” — a science that is always settled. — Eugene WR Gallun

      • Eugene, you forgot to add in the government grant request. BS “science” has no place without government grants paying the way. It is the reason for their existence.

      • Bill,
        Real pizza is a delicate balance between the sauce, the mozz and the crust. Sauce should not be spicy and overpowering but rather light and tomato tasting, the mozz must not be laid on too thick so that the oil in the sauce can filter through, the crust must be salted, light and fluffy but well charred around the edges (only coal fired ovens can do the trick). You should wake up in the night thirsty if the crust is prepared correctly. Dried oregano is ALWAYS sprinkled on BEFORE cooking. Corn meal is used to prevent the dough from sticking to the peel not flour. The biggest problem with pizza these days is under cooking the dough. If I wanted a soft, doughy flavored crust I would go to Dunkin Donuts and get a fritter. Finally, ham and pineapple DO NOT belong on any pizza!

  4. ‘Dr Kumar continued, “There are more than 7.5 hectares of Eucalyptus forest being burned every month by pizzerias and steakhouses. A total of over 307,000 tonnes of wood is burned each year in pizzerias.’

    But burning wood is good isn’t it because it is renewable? Or else scrap wood chips for DRAX.

    • Back in the 1970s, the anti-nuclear crowd had a slogan: “Split wood, not atoms.”

      They got their wish, and, predictably, don’t like that outcome either.

      • You are absolutely right MFK. Greenies don’t care about the environment, they just hate people middle class and poor people, because their tastes are different from upper middle class Environuts

    • lee — Haha! Good point! The left hand does not know what the right hand is doing. Or even care. — Eugene WR Gallun

  5. Jesus F*ing Christ. Give them data (real or modeled) and they will create whatever information or rather
    press releases from it.

      • The home units don’t work. I installed one and after two years, there was zero dust on the collector plates.

      • An electronic air filter works very well-if it’s working. Not made for flue temps though

      • Isn’t the essential mechanism the same though? Certainly this is a “scaled down” example that might be applied to a wood fired oven? Not a commercial scale coal plant, just an oven? I have three catalytic woodstoves that might all benefit from this so I’m sort of invested.

        Think for a moment about a commercial oven hood. The distance between the blower and the intake is variable by design, I had a hood over my stove that had a 30′ flue between the intake and outlet. By the time the exhaust gas makes it to the fan, the temperature is nearly ambient.

        I see very little reason the same technology used to collect dust from a household furnace couldn’t be adapted for use in a pizza parlor. But that’s just me? Flame on. :)

      • I installed one and after two years, there was zero dust on the collector plates.

        All I can suggest Snoper is something is wrong with those collector plates, most likely you have a ground problem.

        The way they work is through a high voltage direct current static charge. Any ground in that system will cause them to fail, and the ground for a high voltage DC system doesn’t need to be physically attached or in physical contact; that charge actually bleeds off into the atmosphere over time even if it’s completely isolated. If it isn’t correctly installed it won’t work at all. It can jump an air gap to a ground that’s too close to it.

        This isn’t to say they don’t work, but they do have to be installed and maintained correctly.

      • How about one of them solar ovens some people think the undeveloped folks should use?

        [Because pizza is ordered after dark? .mod]

      • @bill johnston – How about they get left alone and be allowed to continue using wood burning pizza ovens and grills. The solar ovens for developing countries in Africa prevent health problems for children and women and gives them free time to do things like – oh, education.

        There are probably few undeveloped countries left in the world and the rest are developing faster than we realize. But Africa still has large regions where tribal villages are the norm. Solar cookers are a good fit for those places until faster, better, cooking methods become available.

      • “a better stove design that burned more completely”

        And they’ve been around for decades, Vermont Castings make a high efficiency catalytic stove that surpasses the design of every pellet (forced air induction) stove produced. This is old tech. No difficulties.

        There are questionable reasons institutions like the EPA have paid little (really no) attention to them over the past 30 years and they actually do have something in common with the vested interests of “environmental” interests who invested in the wrong technology. It’s pure protectionism.

  6. This is – literally – the money quote
    “the impacts of emissions from wood/coal burning and meat-cooking in pizzerias and restaurants are yet to be quantified”
    So they have no data, and can’t say if there’s any problem.
    Presumably they’re hoping someone will give them the funds to go and eat steak and pizza in Sao Paolo for a few months while they consider the matter.

      • “…there had not been much consideration of some of the unaccounted sources of emissions. These include wood burning in thousands of pizza shops or domestic waste burning.”
        I believe I truly understand why they would combine the making of food with the proper handling of waste material.

    • Good thing I read through the comments before posting mine, you beat me to it.

      It just irritates the crap out of me newspapers run nonsense like this as science or even real journalism. If you didn’t measure it, it didn’t happen. I hit that sentence and all the alarms went off, all the needles swung into the red and the lights started flashing.

      The really sad part about it is the folks who pick up stuff like this and start repeating as gospel. When you go back and point out it’s all conjecture with no empirical foundation they ask you who you are to criticize a real scientist! Like there was something to it! It’s horrible.

  7. So wonky math hear,

    First, they talk about 1,000,000 pizzas per day, but it turns out only 1800 of them are from wood fired stoves, less than 0.2% of the total. So sounds like wood fired pizzas are actually pretty hard to find. Then comes the claim that 7.5 Hectares of Eucalyptus are being burned every month to support the wood fired pizza industry. Well, there about 11,000,000 hectares of eucalyptus under cultivation in Brazil, and every month 0.00007% of the crop gets burned for pizza. Yes, 0.00007%! What happens to the rest? Well, it get turns into pulp, paper, oil and charcoal, the latter two being ultimately burned for all sorts of purposes, only a teeny tiny fraction of them being to make pizza. So if burning the stuff is a problem, its not burning it for pizzas that is the main issue.

    • It’s the main issue for certain pizzerias in Sao Paulo . . which the inhabitants might want to visit real soon, to see what all the fuss is about ; )

    • “The Latin American megacity of São Paulo is the only megacity worldwide that uses a much cleaner bio-fuel driven fleet. With about 10% of Brazil’s total population, Sao Paulo’s inhabitants fill their vehicles with a biofuel comprising of sugarcane ethanol, gasohol (75% gasoline and 25% ethanol) and soya diesel.”

      All of this sugarcane ethanol comes with a tremendous amount of environmentally disastrous costs. The cutting/burning of the rainforest in order to create the sugarcane plantations and, if you are worried about particulates, the burning of the sugarcane fields (which is being phased out) are much bigger problems than pizza.

      • yeah but..the cessation of burning in cane fields then allows the bugs rodents and disease tally to rise
        and the ash was good for the soils..
        yes you can compost some, but in Aus at least what they do is BURN it IN furnaces to power the processing and the local homes, at best.sell other off as compressed garden mulch to down sth dwellers at premium prices.
        old fashioned me remembers a decent autumn/end of harvest burn smelt wonderful and killed soil nasties, and knocked off the weed seeds. smokes the mice to death also for bonus points. we didnt have such bad plagues and I suspect it also helped knock off the Locust eggs in soils as well

      • All of this sugarcane ethanol comes with a tremendous amount of environmentally disastrous costs. The cutting/burning of the rainforest in order to create the sugarcane plantations
        Due to the laterite soil found in the Amazonian rainforest, very few long-term mass cultivation attempts there have been successful. In general, fields cleared from the Amazon rainforest to grow cassava/manioc tend to last only about 5 years. The locals abandon the field and then burn down some more forest. The exhausted manioc field then reverts back to rainforest.Sugar cane cultivation doesn’t come from areas that were formerly rainforest.

        Almost 90 percent of Brazilian sugarcane production takes place in South-Central Brazil, with the remainder grown in Northeastern Brazil. Both producing regions are located some 2,000 to 2,500 km (1,240 to 1,550 miles) away from the Amazon. That is roughly the distance between New York City and Dallas, or Paris and Moscow. The Amazon region simply does not offer appropriate growing conditions for sugarcane and would never be a target for expanded production, regardless of government regulation.

        FYI.

    • Yes, but everything must be carefully rationed (rationing overseen by the green mob environmentalists, of course) because we’re eventually going to run out of it (‘it’ meaning ‘everything’). Well, except Green bullshit – that’ll never be exhausted. There’s no “waste” or human activity too small to be micromanaged by the self-appointed custodians of the planet. They’re literally saving us all! We should be thanking, no, worshipping! them!

  8. That coal-fired pizzaria in Texas is only copying the oldest and most venerated pizza parlors in New York City, where it is claimed by pizza connoisseurs that only coal can properly flavor the true New York style pizza. There remain only a handful of parlors grandfathered in to still use coal, because of the air quality issues.

    • Frank Pepe’s in New Haven CT (the original) has been burning coal in its oven since 1938.
      Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm good.

      • Yes! The best pizza in the country, cooked with coal fired ovens, is often frequented by climate alarmist central at Yale. If you’re in New Haven, I recommend 1 bacon pie, 1 white clam and garlic, washed down with a Genesee Cream Ale.

    • Compared to places like Patsy’s, Juliana’s, and other great coal-fired places in NYC, Russo’s doesn’t even rise to the level of “low-grade dog food.”

  9. Of course the statement that these people are claiming that wood fired pizza is bad only exists in Anthonys headline. The scientist and their report said no such thing.

    Seems like quite a reasonable report to me overall. Air pollution in areas of dense population can be a serious problem, and it’s important to understand all factors.

    They aren’t attacking pizzerias, just pointing out that having thousands of businesses in a city burning wood, has and effect that should be understood and taken into account.

    davidmhoffer said: “So wonky math hear,

    First, they talk about 1,000,000 pizzas per day, but it turns out only 1800 of them are from wood fired stoves, less than 0.2% of the total. So sounds like wood fired pizzas are actually pretty hard to find.”

    First the numbers are in Anthonys words, not the scientists. That part wasn’t a quote. Second, it was 800, not 1800. Third, what’s wonky about their math. Either 800 pizzas a day equals the wood usage claimed, or it doesn’t. The total number of pizzas made doesn’t make any difference to whether or not this claim is correct.

    Also, the overall carbon balance of using wood isn’t the only important thing, especially in cities. Particulate emissions are a bigger problem in a city.

    [Mr. Schaeffer,

    1. I stand by the headline, despite your spin. They do in fact malign pizza in their press release saying in their headline “The pizza slice that comes at a price”. Clearly they malign not just wood fired pizza, but all pizza, and even single slices. I deemed their headline inaccurate, so created one that quoted their exact words: ‘damaging to the urban environment’. Tough noogies if you don’t like my headline, but they made a clear claim.

    2. “They aren’t attacking pizzerias, just pointing out that having thousands of businesses in a city burning wood, has and effect that should be understood and taken into account.” Oh, please. The word “pizzeria” appears eight times in the article. If they just wanted to make it about wood, they could have said something generic like “restaurants with wood fired ovens”. They didn’t. Your point fails.

    3. “First the numbers are in Anthonys words, not the scientists. That part wasn’t a quote.” Gosh, can you read? The article is a press release from the UNIVERSITY OF SURREY which I quoted in entirety and did not edit. I made no numbers of any kind. You can read it word for word right here: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2016-06/uos-tps061716.php

    Your purpose here seems clear now. You’ll need to retract your statements before commenting further. – Anthony]

    • 1: What is wrong with pointing out that everything has a price, and the case of things that cause a lot of wood to be burnt in large cities, that we should consider the impact?

      2: The number of times a word appears is now how we judge whether or not a report demonizes the thing that the word refers to? That’s nuts.

      3: It was not made clear that the article posted was written by the University of Surrey.

      “From the ‘those are fighting words’ department and the UNIVERSITY OF SURREY. Just wait until they get a load of the “coal fired pizza” in Texas.”

      It sounded like you were reporting on the study, not reproducing a copy of the press release. You didn’t actually state that it was a press release from them.

      [Mr. Schaeffer, I’m disappointed that you can’t admit to your own mistakes, but not surprised.

      1. You claim I’m the only one saying pizza is bad. You’ve now switched the argument to say what’s “what is wrong with (them) pointing out…”. Sigh.
      2. No it’s not “nuts”. You simply lost the argument, and don’t mention the main point about that if the article was only about wood burning, they could have simply said something like “wood oven restaurants”. Your point and counterpoint both fail.
      3. It says right at the top UNIVERSITY OF SURREY, just like I do for all press releases. I have the source in BOLD. You’ve been around here long enough to know this. It also has their headline, their subheadline, and the ending ### a signature of press releases seen thousands of time on WUWT I never end my self-written articles with ###, unless it is a press release of my own. This and -30- is a standard way of ending a press release. Your were just too busy trying to refute the article to read it carefully and got caught up in your own mistakes.

      I’m not going to get into a time-wasting pissing match with you because you misread the article and won’t admit it. Nobody else seems to have a problem confusing the source. You’ve been on permanent moderation for awhile. This thread disruption with comments like these is why. – Anthony]

      • 1: Pointing out that everything has a price, is not the same as calling those things bad. If wood fired pizza ovens contribute to air pollution in cities, then the effect needs to be considered and understood.

        2: That the article uses wood fired ovens as an example does not mean they are demonizing them.

        3: You didn’t make it clear that you were reproducing a press release when you said: “From the ‘those are fighting words’ department and the UNIVERSITY OF SURREY. Just wait until they get a load of the “coal fired pizza” in Texas.”

        I thought that meant you were writing an article about their actual report, not quoting the press release verbatim.

        “It says right at the top UNIVERSITY OF SURREY, just like I do for all press releases. I have the source in BOLD. You’ve been around here long enough to know this.”

        I didn’t know this, and to my untrained eye it looked like you were prefacing your thoughts on the actual report from the university, not just posting their press release, which you didn’t link to.

      • 1. “Pointing out that everything has a price, is not the same as calling those things bad. If wood fired pizza ovens contribute to air pollution in cities, then the effect needs to be considered and understood.” While I agree that real air pollution should be studied, both air pollution controls and wood fired ovens have been around for a long time. So why, now? For them to focus on this small contribution is really just grasping at straws, giving them something to justify their existence, much like the EPA starting to go after farmers for producing too much dust during tilling. It’s overkill on small problems.

        2. “That the article uses wood fired ovens as an example does not mean they are demonizing them.” That’s not an example, that’s the main thrust of the story. They cite no ovens of any other Kind. Your point fails.

        3. “I didn’t know this, and to my untrained eye it looked like you were prefacing your thoughts on the actual report from the university, not just posting their press release, which you didn’t link to.” Nobody else had this problem, so your eye must really be untrained. Read carefully and don’t put words in my mouth and you’ll get along better here. An attitude check would help too.

      • Oh well, it’s your blog, so if you say end of discussion, well, that’s it, but I stand by my statements.

      • I’ll admit I was wrong about the article being in your words, but that was what I genuinely thought, and you could have stated that specifically rather than leaving it to me to infer that from my experience with your writings. Without that information it could well be inferred that that you were referring to a report from the university, rather than a press release from them.

        [nobody else had the problem /mod]

      • Some people just cant give up. Philip Schaeffer admist he’s annoying, but still persists. Now he’s hammering my WUWT email with his pointless pedantry:

        Name: Philip Schaeffer

        Email: redacted

        Website:

        Subject: Missing text from “pizza” press release

        Message: Mr Watts, as I seem to be blocked from posting further in the pizza comments, I am mailing you to ask you to update your article with the full original text of the press release. The version you published misses the following text from the very top of the release.

        “Here is the missing text, which should be at the top of the article:

        “Scientific report announces emerging risk caused by wood burning stoves in pizza restaurants and charcoal in steakhouses to the environment.

        The city of Sao Paolo in Brazil was used as a case study – a megacity with a compulsory green policy on fuel, yet struggling to meet pollution standards less stringent than Delhi or London.

        Crosswind caused by the impact of biomass burning of the Amazon rainforest and agricultural areas of Sao Paulo were also found to be a contributory factor on why the city’s air pollution is so toxic, despite a green vehicle policy.””

        I am aware that my persistence and stubbornness annoys you, but I’m sure you’ll agree that if you are going to use this press release to criticize the authors, that you should present the full correct version. Also, the missing text refers to “charcoal in steakhouses”, and you used the lack of any reference to anything other than pizza ovens in your argument against me.

        http://www.surrey.ac.uk/mediacentre/press/2016/pizza-slice-comes-price

        Philip, here’s the deal. I get almost all press releases from Eurekalert. Eurekalert is the official distributor of science press releases for hundreds of Universities worldwide. For a press release to be published on Eurekalert, it has to be submitted by the University. In this case the University of Surrey published the text and image to Eurekalert here: http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2016-06/uos-tps061716.php

        I had nothing to do with the “missing” text you assert. Maybe they thought a different version was better for the broader global distribution Eurekalert affords. Maybe the media package they pay for with Eurekalert has a word limit. I just don’t know. What I can say is that I don’t give a damn about your accusations that I’ve somehow left something out when the University of Surrey is wholly and completely responsible for the text published on Eurekalert.

        You lost the argument, get over yourself. If you want to continue your pedantry, take it up with the PIO at the University of Surrey and maybe they’ll tell you why the press releases differ slightly, but I’m not wasting any further time with you.

      • Mr Schaeffer;

        In your first ill considered salvo you insisted that I had quoted 1800 pizzas per day when the actual number is 800. You are wrong. The article says 800 pizzas per day for in restaurant serving, and an additional 1000 pizzas per day for take home. You’d be well served to double check your own reading comprehension before pissing on others.

    • What are “secondary aerosols”, please?

      I would guess those are airborne particles derived from the burning wood.
      The primary aerosols would be tiny airborne particles of pizza, a well known environmental hazard which the EPA regulates quite strictly.

    • David Chappell-

      “secondary aerosols” are small; “liquid” or solid particles formed in the atmosphere when sunlight causes reactions of NOx and VOCs (volatile organic carbons, which are complex hydrocarbons). They are called “secondary” because they are formed in the atmosphere, and are not emitted from some source like an automobile or power plant.

  10. 7.5 hectares of burned forest a month is nothing. They can always replant and reforest. That’s how commercial forestry works. But they should report how many hectares of forest were burned and forever turned into sugarcane plantations for their massive biofuel program? I’m sure the seasonal burning of sugarcane plantations emit more air pollution than pizza wood stoves. Scrap the biofuel program. Just use LPG and recycled cooking oil for cars.

    • Brazil has massive offshore oil. Think Saudi scale.. They did the ethanol thing in the ’70s, then discovered the oil… and have been slowly drifting back to petrol since…

      So no need to burn forests, or sugarcane, or LPG for cars. Gasoline is fine and available.

      Note the mention of 75% gas 25% ethanol. In the original ethanol program it was 100% ethanol in new cars. Then they added 10% ethanol to gasoline for old cars. Now, with flex fuel cars, the mix can shift even more.

      BTW, my ’79 carburetor car does poorly on gasahol. It loves alcohol free ‘boat gas’.

  11. Wait till they start to work out all the wood fired ovens from the Etruscans, or before, up till now, then we can start on the potters from pre-history.

    • I lived in Featherston, in the Wairarapa just north of Wellington, New Zealand, and the term “pea souper” was relevant sometimes during the winter as the air was heavy with wood burning smoke. Fortunately it was rare as it was usually very windy there. But still…you could see the whole town blanketed in smoke.

      • yeah and Adelaide was the same for some late winter afternoons too, industrial zone all the way to the port, plus wood fires..and the towns in a “bowl” so if the winds werent moving it did “inversion layer” n hang round
        oddly? I dont remember anyone having asthma or other issues or even complaining at all
        that was late 60s to mid 70s

      • No but main domestic space heating is provided via wood burning and that causes significant air quality issues. The odd wood fired pizza place would not.

      • Wellington – allegedly the windiest city in the World. Meridian Energy even claims a capacity factor for its wind turbine of 49%. I hardly think pollution is a problem. So, please define and quantify the terms, “problem,” “sometimes during the winter,” “relevant” and “rare.”

    • Quite so. I wonder if the rise in number of pizzas eaten parallels the rise of Industrialisation globally? If so,we know what’s REALLY causing global warming!

  12. Let’s not forget all the forests being cut down, especially in the southern US, to supply “renewable” fuel power plants with wood pellets in England and other countries.

  13. I think the concern expressed in the article can be justified.

    This is not about climate change, and it is not about burning of a substantial amount of wood.

    However, wood burning is a serious source of air pollution. Globally it is the single source causing most deaths, especially from indoor air pollution due to lack of chimneys, but also from unfiltered outdoor pollution, as is the case here.

    The emissions from power stations fired with wood pellets is beyond compare cleaner than the unfiltered emissions from stoves.

    This is about the very real problem of big city air pollution, which we should take seriously
    Jan

    • When they get serious about what our climate is about, then I’ll think about not using wood to heat since we can’t afford their heavy carbon taxed electric prices in our local. If we heated in winters with electricity, our hydro bills would be more per month than the house mortgage payments are. We know this is fact since we ran out of wood in winter for one month. Current bills are $330-$350 of which we actually use about $100-120, rest is GOV-Carbon taxes. One 5 ft base board heater costs at least $150 per month- counts the rooms in avg home and do the math – that was a quote from Ontario HYDRO 3 yrs ago, prices have gone way up since then too. Ontario, Canada.
      They’ll have to put a heck of a lot of people in jail here if they start outlawing our wood stoves when we can’t afford their hydro bills. PS, we would use our electric heat if it was affordable. Future plan, install n-gas furnace.

      • This is referred to in Greenista circles as the ‘double benefit’. Cream the profits and taxes on energy and reduce the population through the incidence of cold deaths.

  14. I would be OK with particulates from wood burning providing food establishments than PM2.5 and PM5 particulates from poorly maintained diesel engines and high sulfur diesel fuel in Africa along with their open, charcoal fired, fires. Want to see what real bad air quality is? Go and spend a night in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

  15. I must really take exception to the remarks about “looking at the ammo inventory” and “locking up” the nut jobs. That puts us on the level of the the nut jobs, who must resort to force rather than have a provable case.

    In this instance, the air pollution may be a very real problem. I lived in Southern California’s Inland Empire from 1980 to 2008, and in that time saw the population quadruple, and the air quality improve significantly due to anti-pollution efforts. It’s difficult to convey how “significantly” that improvement was, but it was enormous. There was a saying when I first arrived: “The mountains go on vacation for the summer,” which referred to the fact that for several months of the year, one couldn’t see the mountains because of the smog. I’ll never forget the first time I saw the mountains while driving to Canoga Park, having driven the same route for months and not knowing they were there.

    The chief culprit had been the Kaiser Steel plant in Fontana, California. They ran coke ovens which put enormous amounts of sulfur-laden hydrocarbons into the local atmosphere. The geography of the region trapped this awful stuff in a way that never allowed it to disperse. Despite valiant efforts on the part of Kaiser to clean up those ovens, they were never able to improve the situation, and finally shut them down. Air quality improved over night.

    The same may (or may not) be true in Sao Paulo, but to automatically respond with underlying threats of force is just bizarre. They may have a genuine problem, and it may be anthropogenic – as it absolutely was in Southern California. But they may also not care about that problem, trading their desire for pizza for their desire for cleaner air. That’s really the issue. And an academic debate is a good venue in which to start.

    Having said all that, it’s delicious to see the “greens” hoist on their own pitards…

    • I think the outraged response, at least on my part, is the relative impact of wood burning pizza ovens on Sao Paulo air quality and the admitted lack of any hard evidence to suggest such an absurd claim might be of any real import.

      I understand particulate pollution is a real problem in some areas (and I had the chance to visit L.A. in the 60’s to witness it for myself). But you have to admit the alarmism over Pizza ovens is classic :) I certainly wasn’t belittling honest and well documented research on the factors influencing urban air quality.

    • MfK wrote: “I lived in Southern California’s Inland Empire from 1980 to 2008, and in that time saw the population quadruple, and the air quality improve significantly due to anti-pollution efforts. It’s difficult to convey how “significantly” that improvement was, but it was enormous. There was a saying when I first arrived: “The mountains go on vacation for the summer,” which referred to the fact that for several months of the year, one couldn’t see the mountains because of the smog. I’ll never forget the first time I saw the mountains while driving to Canoga Park, having driven the same route for months and not knowing they were there.”

      I was out in Los Angeles in the early 1970’s and the air quality was very bad. Yellow and Orange skies and visibility very limited. You could smell it in the air.

      The improvements have been dramatic, and welcome.

    • BTW, I think the people who were talking about “getting out the ammo” were just kidding. Noone is going to take away their pizzas anyway, so there is no need. :)

  16. Guess what. Your charcoal grill is next along with camp fires, incense sticks and probably even the wooden matches used to light them. Taking the human race back to pre-industrial times is one thing; forcing us back to the point where we don’t use cooking fires is another.

  17. Um … any chance this is all a smokescreen (pardon) to cover up for the possibility that their huge “clean fuel” Hippy-Juice initiative didn’t reduce the air pollution as much as promised? Could these folks be looking for an “overlooked” scapegoat?

  18. MfK
    June 18, 2016 at 1:48 am

    I must really take exception to the remarks about “looking at the ammo inventory” and “locking up” the nut jobs. That puts us on the level of the the nut jobs, who must resort to force rather than have a provable case.
    ****************************************************************************************************************
    I read and understood the remark to be checking that one had the means to defend oneself when the “nut jobs” come for us. Note: “nut jobs” does not exclude the government agencies!

    SteveT

  19. From the January 18, 2016 issue of The New Yorker …

    FIRE STARTER

    Forbes March wasn’t always in the firewood business. He spent three seasons on the ABC soap opera “One Life to Live,” playing the doomed winery owner Nash Brennan, who falls to his death through a skylight window. Soon after, in 2009, March quit acting, moved to Jeffersonville, New York, and established the New York Firewood Company. The firm now supplies kiln-dried, plastic-wrapped bundles of logs to seventy-five restaurants and hundreds of private residences in and around New York City.
    [ … ]
    Last year, as part of an effort to protect the city’s air quality, Mayor Bill de Blasio signed a law prohibiting the installation of any new wood-burning fireplaces, and mandating that wood burned in a preëxisting fireplace have a moisture content of twenty per cent or less, by weight.

    http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2016/01/18/fire-starter

    • I have a grandfathered fireplace in California. New ones are not allowed.

      There are fireplace police with IR detectors to enforce that I only use mine on approved days, that never seem to include cold winter nights….

      BTW, the only “open fire” allowed is in a bbq grill, and that is only due to lobbiest pressure… but you must have something nearby to put on the grill when the fire truck rolls up, or you get a ticket for air pollution. So keep a few hotdogs near when lighting… don’t know if they will let you go in the house to fetch them… (I showed my plate of dogs and the fire commissar took his truck away… and advised about the meat waving defence…)

      The Peoples Republic of Kalifornia, where fire is illegal… cook your tofuburger with a windmill, or else.

  20. As I have said previously, on another site,
    a “green” is a person who lays awake at night, wringing their hands, and wetting their beds, filled with fear and and angst, that out there, somewhere, there is someone who is happy.
    They will find no peace until everyone is as miserable as they.

    • I’ve heard that applied to Puritans before. Of course, Greens are nothing if not modern Puritans.

  21. Tell that to DRAX wood fire (using US wood in the UK)

    and if ANYONE want to tell me I can’t have a wood-fired pizza when I want one..

    …… they better be a whole lot bigger and more aggressive than I am.

  22. Well, this is crazy on its face as many commenters have already noted by this time. It is horrific “science”. It is another example that the universities and the scientific endeavor collapsed starting in the late 60s sometime. (I was there for the start of it)

    What CO2 does, if anything, is still an open question. All charts and graphs that I have seen tell us that the planet warms up first and then CO2 goes up. This is true on all time scales. Does that not tell anyone anything?

    During this century there has been no warming at all even as CO2 levels have gone up dramatically. Is that not a real scientific test of some sort?

    And then there is the fact that no one has ever proved that CO2 warms the surface anyway. Perhaps it does warm it a tiny bit or perhaps it cools the surface on net. But we just don’t know — and yet make thousands of “scientific” predictions, all false, on the basis of an unknown. This is just WAG. (wild assed guess)

    • Gigatons of taxpayer funding + pseudoscience + PR companies + captive media = what we have now. It’s disgraceful, and we’re paying for it (in more ways than one).

    • Those pizzas leave their CO2 birthplace very hot. The further they get from the CO2 the cooler they get! The magic molecule!

  23. It would be crazy if they were not replanting. Thats what I had planned for dinner tonight. Pizza on the Weber Grill! charcoal of course but with hard wood charcoal.

  24. Hold on now, wood is renewable therefore it is a more desirable energy source that fossil fuels, right?

      • In just 30 years, peat has started forming on lake bottoms in the St. Helens blast zone. Nature isn’t wasting time putting all that freshly dead wood and its carbon content to good use.

    • Coal is wood. No really. From live trees, to dead trees, to peat, to coal. Decomposition, compacting, and heat all work to concentrate the carbon, resulting in a much more energy dense fuel.

      Steel mills use a similar process to make coke, essentially a super-coal. Normal coal is cooked under pressure in furnaces to concentrate the carbon even more. Coke fuel burns hotter, so it more efficiently reaches the temperatures necessary to smelt pig iron into steel.

  25. Interesting case of double think in Paris. As far as I’m aware the following is still the case, after an attempt to ban wood fires in the city. The new regulations on open wood fires in homes across Paris, states:

    1 The use of open fires is allowed for the auxiliary heating of the household
    2 Wood used in stoves, fireplaces and hearths must be eco-efficient
    3 The use of open fires as the main heating source for a home is prohibited

    Because of particulate pollution the Paris authorities are starting to ban diesel vehicles from the city, starting with the oldest, pre-1997 I think but could be wrong.

    • Modern diesels using Ultra low sulpher fuel and anti pollution systems using DEF (Diesel Exhaust Fluid) have very low harmful emissions. In fact these days the exhaust from these diesels is sometimes cleaner than the ambient air in heavily urbanized environments.

      As for my steaks and other home grilled or smoked foods. They’ll have to take my grill and smoker from my cold dead hands.

  26. The “study” is a half-baked one. Furthermore, it does what Greenie-soaked, carbon-obsessed “scientists” always do; confuses and conflates CO2 with actual pollutants. These sorts of studies always come off as a confused mishmash of conflicting ideas.

  27. Yes, let’s compare a city’s pizza ovens with the wholesale burning of sugarcane fields. The smog here in Santiago is horrible at times in the winter. The city was built in a geographic bowl with not a lot of breezes. We have a lot of pizza shops here too so that must be what makes it worse. That or all the millions of poor people using wood and other fuels for heat because gas and electricity are so expensive due to socialist leaning government taxes here. But I would focus on the pizza ovens. Rich people eat pizza. That is where your answer lies.

  28. This reminds me of what the unwritten motto of the California Air Resources Board (CARB) was when I lived there–If we can count it, we will regulate it. They were requiring afterburners on bakery ovens to limit alcohol emissions, and heavily fined a commercial yeast manufacturer.

  29. I cant belive this sh…also the German Greens will say Wood is good!Germans gover. have given Millions of Euros to people who installed Wood Heating Units.The Greens say this is good because wood came again and again….

    So whos right now?Haha…

  30. Focus on the real problem – Indoor Cooking without Chimneys

    7 million premature deaths annually linked to air pollution

    Regionally, low- and middle-income countries in the WHO South-East Asia and Western Pacific Regions had the largest air pollution-related burden in 2012, with a total of 3.3 million deaths linked to indoor air pollution and 2.6 million deaths related to outdoor air pollution.

    Burden of disease from Household Air Pollution for 2012

    Globally, 4.3 million deaths were attributable to household air pollution (HAP) in 2012, almost all in
    low and middle income (LMI) countries. The South East Asian and Western Pacific regions bear most
    of the burden with 1.69 and 1.62 million deaths, respectively. Almost 600’000 deaths occur in Africa,
    200’000 in the Eastern Mediterranean region, 99’000 in Europe and 81’000 in the Americas. The
    remaining 19’000 deaths occur in high income countries.

  31. Are traditional bakeries next? Or has everyone in the world learned to not mess with the price of bread lest you lose your head? If that is the case, then they have forgotten that pizza dough is bread.

    What a ridiculous article. Surely the burning of those sugar cane fields and the deforestation to provide all that ‘bio fuel’ their cars run on has nothing to do with it…..oh no! Its the pizza…of course it is, makes perfect sense. Especially when you are offering or supporting a competing business to the pizza industry(or supporting a chain that doesn’t use wood fired ovens…always follow the money).

    The whopper of the article is how many pizza joints Sao Paulo has! WOW! Now I want to go on a pizza vacation.

  32. A carbon tax is often promoted to “carbon pollution”.
    How about a wood tax?
    But then the question becomes, how much wood would a wood tax save if a wood tax would save wood?

  33. By the exact same reasoning, this means that they’re going to have to attack good old low-and-slow barbeque.

    It would be quite enjoyable to watch the result of that effort, especially from my vantage here in NC.

  34. These same idiots also want to keep the third world from clean energy and want them to keep on burning dung, wood etc. to cook.

  35. “In addition, another part of the problem is the impact of the neighbouring Amazon rainforest. Biomass burning from the south southern edge of the forest can be transported across the Atlantic coast to Brazil and had to be included in the qualitative assessments of the city air pollution.”

    Please excuse my ignorance of geography…Why does biomass burning in Brazil have to cross the Atlantic coast to get to the coast of Brazil?

    • That would be weird. I’m watching a BBQ cooking show set in Texas right now. They use wood in all their smokers. Part of the discussion was about what wood is available in which parts of Texas. Closing quote from the show’s moderator: “There’s nothing like cooking real meat with real wood.”

  36. Living in a city that still allows wood burning fireplaces I can assure you that local air pollution does exist, in the cooler winter months when there is little air movement (temperature inversions are common here) the adverse effects of these fireplaces can be quite debilitating to walkers by. I am in good health and I have trouble sometimes catching my breath in these areas of our city.
    In the end, I consider that wood burning is not a good idea in large urban areas from a local air pollution standpoint.
    It is a question of concentration of pollutants really. One wood burning stove/fireplace is not an issue, twenty in a small area can be a real problem. Where do you draw the line?

  37. Oh dear! If it had been anything other than wood-fired pizza…

    These researchers are holding a jar of nitroglycerin while running a jackhammer. They should know better than to go after pizza ovens. They should drop this research and very quietly go on to something else.

  38. And yet the Loony Green Meanies in Britain have replaced coal-fired power plants with American wood-burning facilities. Crazy, man!

    Wood contains relatively more carbon than coal, coal more than oil and oil more than natural gas. Which is why the US switch to gas power has cut our carbon emissions more than called for by the idiotic Kyoto Accords. As the carbon content declines, the hydrogen content increases.

  39. Well I’m going to go against the grain, if such activities are fairly common then it is quite possibly a significant cause of pollution in this city. Fashionable wood burners/stoves in the UK are already having an impact on air quality in winter – responsible for 10% of air pollution in London. And on the continent domestic coal/wood burning (more for economics than fashion) really is causing more and more serious air pollution – Kraków probably the worst case. It’s almost like we are going backwards.

  40. We should recognize that the left wants EVERYONE to be guilty of something.

    That is why the number of our laws pile up. When everyone is guilty then everyone lives in fear of that knock on the door — that subpoena in the mail. Whimper a protest and the government “legally” descends “about something”.

    For the greens to have control everyone must be guilty of green crimes so every damn thing must be a green crime. Its an old leftist tactic.

    Eugene WR Gallun

    • We should recognize that the left wants EVERYONE to be guilty of something.

      That is why the number of our laws pile up. When everyone is guilty then everyone lives in fear of that knock on the door — that subpoena in the mail. Whimper a protest and the government “legally” descends “about something”.

      For the greens to have control everyone must be guilty of green crimes so every damn thing must be a green crime. Its an old leftist tactic.

      Eugene WR Gallun

      How right you are. I didn’t want you to get into any trouble, so I redacted all of the illegal words in your comment. I let one iffy word stand but it does depend on what the meaning of “is” is.

  41. Actually this is a good thing. If one of their concerns is the release of carbon dioxide, we need to encourage them to study the harmful effect of a population over 4 million routinely drinking carbonated beverages, including beer, and ask for a comparison to the CO produced by pizza ovens.

    We also should demand that the research include the burning of candles. There are over three million Catholics in San Paula. That means a lot of Catholic churches, which further implies a lot of candles being burned daily. How much pollution are they contributing?

    Once people realize that their entire culture could be questioned, we can sit back and watch others do the fighting.

  42. First they tried to target the poor old cows farting methane and now the Idle Hands of the Devil have moved on to denounce wood-fired Pizzas. I feel like going out buying a steak and loading it onto a wood-fired pizza just to punish these lunatics.
    In the real world, these people would be assessed and sedated and locked away.

  43. ‘Professor Vince Emery, Senior Vice-President of Global Strategy and … commented: “This is another … example of how global challenges such as air pollution … need global networks to identify the problems and … create innovative solutions”.

    ‘Paul Smith, Associate Dean … added “It is great to see that the seed funding invested by UGPN partners has facilitated internationally co-authored work in such an important research area”.’

    In two paragraphs we have “global” repeated three times and “internationally” once. Over wood fired pizzas in one So. American city?

    Global (see, they’ve got me doing it too) governance … on steroids? Help!!!

  44. Will this insanity ever end without a revolution. Man the barricades against the Bureaucrats, the Faux Scientists, the Modelers, the Politicians, the Green Totalitarians and all the rest of the know it all’s and do- gooders who seek to stuff their BS down our gullets for the good of the “earth”.

  45. in one aspect they make sense, but what makes me to laugh it away is that now, as prices for fuel are soaring, and people use their stoves again they come with this “garbage”

    so it is more a try to block people from a cheap heating source then to really make sense.

    wood fires are polluting, in a big city this can be problematic if done on a massive scale, but in the end the amount of houses with wood fires vs industry, cars,… is so low that it can be neglected. i call this “going for the small bit in order to ignore the real big city issues….

  46. Burning wood is okay by the warmists. The huge Drax coal fired station in UK switched to South Carolina hardwood because it’s renewable!!! We burn food crops in our cars and trucks. How stupid is all that. Maybe if Drax went into the pizza business using waste heat from wood firing they could turn a decent profit without huge subsidies.

  47. Hey, maybe order a wood baked pizza on your way to a Texas coal roller derby…

    (coal rolling is intentionally disabling the combustion monitors on a diesel engine so as to dump rich fuel into the combustion process…)

  48. environ mental illness – wait:

    they really search pizzarias for the clue that saves the World.
    _______________________

    Tired of lying in the sunshine staying home to watch the rain
    You are young and life is long and there is time to kill today
    And then one day you find ten years have got behind you
    No one told you when to run, you missed the starting gun

  49. According to the University of Surrey’s Dr Kumar [as quoted] 307, 000 tonnes of wood is burned in pizzerias east year to produce 800 pizzas/day in restaurants and 1000 pizzas/day delivered]……a yearly total of 657,000 pizzas. That compares with Sao Paulo’s annual pizza production of about 365,000,000.

    So the wood fired pizzas amount 0.18% of annual production. That certainly is an emerging risk. At that level it couldn’t be anything but “emerging” as it barely exists.

    They could probably use better ovens though……..according to those figures it takes 478kg of wood to cook a pizza

  50. First it is “Split wood, not atoms”, now it is, “Don’t split anything except hairs”. When I first saw the title of this article, I thought it was a spoof. Well, at least the environmentalist movement is keeping us entertained.

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