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Author: State of the Environment 2023

In 2022–23, the EPA undertook a wood smoke monitoring program in collaboration with the Mount Barker District Council to identify the extent of particulate pollution emitted from the use of wood heaters in Mount Barker. 

The study found there was a direct link between the use of wood heaters during winter and elevated PM2.5 particles rising during evening peaking around midnight, and then gradually falling until the morning hours. Levels of PM2.5 for Mount Barker were also clearly higher than at other monitoring locations and exceeded the NEPM PM2.5 standard.

The daily average PM2.5 concentration in Mount Barker, in comparison to the NEPM limit, from May 2022 to the end of October 2022. 

During this 6 month period, the daily average PM2.5 concentrations in Mount Barker exceeded the NEPM limit twice. From May through to the end of September daily averages were high, which indicates higher levels of wood heater use during colder months.

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