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Can modern wood boilers reduce fine dust?

How much fine dust can be saved when burning wood?

At the end of 2021, approximately 660,000 households in Austria used biomass heating (pellet, wood chips or wood log heating) or wood stoves as their main heating system. More than 8,000 installed pellet boilers in 2020 correspond to an increase of 20 % compared to the previous year. Sales figures for wood log/pellet combi boilers even increased by 45 %.

Since 2001, more than 300,000 wood-fired central heating systems have been installed in Austria, which has led to a 25 % decrease in particulate matter emissions. This is due to the fact that modern biomass furnaces replace not only fossil heating systems but also old solid fuel heating systems with high emission values.

Only 4 % of particulate matter emissions from biomass boilers

According to the OLI (Austrian Air Pollution Inventory), 2/3 of the particulate matter PM10 emissions from small-scale consumers come from all-fuel burners, an outdated and completely obsolete design of log boilers, which account for 16 % of the total particulate matter and more than 60 % in domestic heating. Domestic fuel is the fuel used in small domestic furnaces, including cookers, fireplaces, heating cookers, central heating, and the like.

In comparison, only 4 % of particulate matter emissions come from modern biomass boilers.

According to a study entitled ‘Heat Future 2050’, the use of modern biomass heating systems and thermal refurbishment can reduce particulate matter emissions (P10 emissions) by up to 90 % in a 100 % renewable energy scenario.

You can reduce particulate matter with these heating systems