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Topic: Council inspectors to demand £5 'carbon offset' for barbecues (NSC) Return to archive
1st April 2007 05:04 AM
Ten Thousand Motels Council inspectors to demand £5 'carbon offset' for barbecues

It is one of the timeless rituals of the new globally-warmed great British summer: firing up the barbecue and slinging on a steak.

But people who choose to burn charcoal may have to think twice - as councils now have swinging new powers to force homeowners to buy 'carbon offsets' before they light up or face a £50 fine.

The measures, which have been approved by the Climate Change Unit of the Department of Environment, Fisheries and Rural Affairs, are likely to severely curtail the number of barbecues Britons enjoy this summer.

Last summer an estimated 800,000 tonnes of charcoal were burned in British gardens.

According to Greenwood, a climate change pressure group, that amount would have created 50,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas carbon dioxide - comparable to the amount given off by all British cars for one month.

"It may seem petty but when put together the amount of CO2 produced is really significant,' said Greenwood spokesman Luke Fairweather.

"People are beginning to understand that they must curb the use of their cars in order to save the planet from catastrophe but they also need to consider other areas of their lives.

"And thinking before you barbecue is part of being a responsible human being."

Councils will approve barbecues only if the householder has bought a so-called carbon offset.

These should cost no more than £5 each and will allow sufficient barbecuing - as long as the cook is proficient - to create 20 steaks, or 40 if you like them rare.

The carbon offsets will be bought from Gases R Us, a carbon trading company based in Glastonbury, Somerset. They will use the money to contribute to carbon-offset projects around the world.

These programmes, such as reforestation, wind farming and solar panels, effectively balance out the CO2 emissions of the barbecue.

Gases R Us spokeswoman Mindy Stevens said: "A carbon offset for barbecuing a steak will equate to a banana tree sapling in Indonesia. One for barbecuing half a dozen sausages would buy a third of a wind turbine for a peasant in Peru."

Councils will appoint barbecue inspectors who will have the power to enter residents' gardens and check whether any charcoal has been burnt.

The smell of burning, the remains of cooked burgers or a charred kebab stick will all be sufficient for them to apply on-the-spot fines of up to £50.

Campaigners reacted with horror at yet another intrusion into personal lives.

"We already have council snoopers inspecting our views, our conservatories and our energy efficiency,' said Andrew Freeman of the pressure group No Limits.

"Now these inspectors will have the right to burst into our gardens on a lovely summer's afternoon and force us to drop our barbecuing tongs."

The new rules are likely to seriously affect sales of charcoal barbecues.

But those who already use butane gas grills will also be required to buy carbon offsets, as the grills, too, produce significant amounts of CO2.

A spokesman for B&Q said they were looking at producing new 'green' barbecues to cut down CO2 emissions.

One idea is to harness the warmth created by rotting compost, but these would require a chef to start cooking days in advance.

So-called 'friction barbecues' powered by a guest on a stationary exercise bike are also being examined.

Keen barbecue chef Ron Staines from Chislehurst, Kent, reacted with horror. "I think it's disgraceful. Having a barbecue is one of my human rights,' he said. "And I just don't believe I produce that much CO2, mainly because I usually can't get the thing alight."

But a spokesman for Defra was unrepentant. "Some people may think destroying the planet is a trivial matter but we must limit the selfish activities for the sake of our children,' he said.

The new regulations take force today.
1st April 2007 05:21 AM
Altamont Well done!
1st April 2007 09:14 AM
fireontheplatter we have to start somewhere.
anything thats better for this planet, i am all for it.

remember what sting sang...we cannot sink or we are fucked 'cause we're all in the same boat.....
1st April 2007 02:18 PM
Bloozehound The horror

We must end this Limey Bar-B-Q Nazisism before it takes over the world
1st April 2007 07:58 PM
Nellcote In this article's honor, I just completed a fine bbq.
Smoked several pounds of boneless country style ribs, gently rubbed with Stubbs Spice Rub. Along side, about a dozen chicken wings, with a special garlic rub. I used good mesquite wood to augment the charcoal. Finished them off with a special brown sugar bbq sauce the last 15 minutes. It was faaaaaaaaaaaaaantastic.

I am a charcoal purist. After reading this article, it won't be long (great song off ABB, by the way) before some PC police invade our shores, and start to force us in this manner. I made a decision today to allocate a portion of my garage to nothing but charcoal/mesquite/hickory/applewood/alder wood storage, so I will have enough to will to my children. I will not be stopped!
I wish to thank you for your continued support and cooperation in this matter.
1st April 2007 09:18 PM
glencar Amazing. Today's NY Times had an article about howe churches are now getting palms for Palm Sumday from sources that don't damage the ecosystem & also give money back to those who chop up the fronds. I actually ahve no problem with any of that but the tone of the article was so precious it made me sick.
1st April 2007 09:34 PM
tumbled oink....what about the wood fired saunas in sweden. thats what I'm worried about ..that is my dream, to sauna in sweden and then jump into the river....after buying bjorn borg underwear....
[Edited by tumbled]
[Edited by tumbled]
2nd April 2007 12:04 AM
Nellcote wrote:
In this article's honor, I just completed a fine bbq.
Smoked several pounds of boneless country style ribs, gently rubbed with Stubbs Spice Rub. Along side, about a dozen chicken wings, with a special garlic rub. I used good mesquite wood to augment the charcoal. Finished them off with a special brown sugar bbq sauce the last 15 minutes. It was faaaaaaaaaaaaaantastic.

You showed'm Nellie, you showed'm real good

to hell with them BBQ-nark scums
2nd April 2007 05:50 AM
lotsajizz Hell with the planet...ribs are more important

OK now
2nd April 2007 08:59 AM
Ten Thousand Motels
lotsajizz wrote: Hell with the planet...ribs are more important

Didn't they already have an Ice Age once? Maybe the Cavemen were having too many outdoor BBQ's.

But leave it to Homo Sapiens....can't seem to solve any problems without war or draconian laws.
2nd April 2007 10:32 AM
MrPleasant I thought that global warming was just a myth. Like "pegasuses" and Jesus Christ.
2nd April 2007 03:24 PM
glencar 25 years ago they were predicting an upcoming Ice Age. now everything's heating up. WTF? When they get their story together, I might consider their arguments.
9th April 2007 12:56 PM

9th April 2007 02:59 PM
gimmekeef Where can I buy.."Nellcotes Inconvenient BBQ Rub"?...btw Nelly...Stubbs...good choice!
9th April 2007 03:35 PM
CraigP This is ridiculous.

I'll give 'em some gas they couldn't put a tax on!
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