Our most recent assessment shows that domestic solid fuel burning contributed 40% (42 kilotonnes) of total PM2.5 emissions in the UK during 2015, with domestic wood burning alone accounting for 35% (37 kilotonnes). This compares with 39 kilotonnes (solid fuels) and 33 kilotonnes (wood) in 2014 and 45 kilotonnes (solid fuels) and 40 kilotonnes (wood) in 2013.
Evidence shows that particulate matter (PM) of 2.5 microns in diameter (PM2.5) and smaller can have detrimental effects on health. Small particles from smoke which are formed when wood is burned can get into the lungs and blood and be transported around the body, where they have a variety of detrimental health effects. It is, however, difficult to assess the increase in risk to public health that is associated with domestic wood burning alone.