Reducing Black Carbon Impacts on Air Pollution and Climate through Wood Combustion Measures


Black Carbon (BC) is a source of local air pollution and a major contributor to global warming. Black Carbon is generated by incomplete combustion sources, including diesel engines, vehicles emissions, residential wood burning and forest fires. Reducing BC emissions could greatly reduce climate impacts on the short and medium term, while improving human health along with multiple co-benefits. The California Air Resources Board (CARB) has already addressed BC emissions effectively, and by 2030 the major emissions sector is projected to be residential wood combustion. CARB should further enforce new measures for reducing BC emissions from the residential wood burning. We recommend a public education program for the correct use of residential devices and a program to promote the shift to less polluting fuels and efficient technologies. Both measures could yield important BC emissions reduction thereby improving air quality and reducing negative impacts on climate.


This policy brief was prepared by Pablo Busch (

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