No pizza oven on Spare-the-Air days

2010-03-19T00:00:00Z No pizza oven on Spare-the-Air days Napa Valley Register
March 19, 2010 12:00 am

Dear editor, In the March 2 edition of Napa Valley Register, you ran an article on the food page about a new restaurant that will specialize in authentic pizza napoletana as one of the menu options.

Reading the article, it became obvious the owners had indeed put forth considerable effort and planning in their new endeavor. I wish them well and do plan on trying their cuisine after they open for business. However, I am confused with their cooking process and the city of Napa in regard to air quality. The article stated the owners imported a wood-fueled Acino oven from Naples, Italy, and will take turns feeding the fire 24 hours, day and night, for 11 days to cure the bricks in their imported oven.

Now, wait a minute, I recall the threat of a fine levied against any citizen enjoying a fire in their fireplace on a Spare the Air day. The city will allow the 24-hour burning pollution of a cord of wood for 11 days, but not allow a homeowner to enjoy a warm fire for three-to-four hours? How can the city officials justify this?

Dennis L. Andersen / Napa

Copyright 2016 Napa Valley Register. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(16) Comments

  1. notanapanative
    Report Abuse
    notanapanative - March 19, 2010 7:39 am
    An excellent question!

    Apparently fire bans are only for the great unwashed masses, .....or those without any connections.

    The laws need to have some common sense applied to them.

    Like an exception for a new business like this, or for the rest of us during specific holidays etc.

    We all want to breathe clean air AND enjoy ourselves in our homes with our friends and families on the holidays.

    No more selective enforcement, write the laws with a little common sense and enforce them evenly and equitably, or take them off the books and start over.
  2. rocketman
    Report Abuse
    rocketman - March 19, 2010 7:59 am
    the use of a wood fire to cook is exempt...........
  3. Suze
    Report Abuse
    Suze - March 19, 2010 8:33 am
    Yes, I too find the fireplace pollution rulings more than a little discriminatory.

    Literally days after a fireplace ban on burning recently, the valley was blue with smoke from burn piles in vineyards, and it certainly was not a windy day.

    The ruling on these burn piles is that farmers can only burn 'cleared' land - ie when ripping out a diseased vineyard, or clearing for planting a new one.

    However, when driving in the valley, it is easy to see piles of vine prunings and miscellaneous debris alight on a 'burn day.'

    Where is the draconian enforcement for this?
  4. Cowboy
    Report Abuse
    Cowboy - March 19, 2010 8:44 am
    Yes rocketman woood is exempt to cook, but they're not cooking, they're curing bricks for 11 days... Their setup budget should include a hefty fine for those 11 days...
  5. Dirty Napkin
    Report Abuse
    Dirty Napkin - March 19, 2010 10:15 am
    Boycot. Lets stand in front of this business, like they do at planned parenthood..Theyy to are killing people, and future children. Put that in you're fireplace and smoke it...
  6. Tiredofcomplainingnapkins
    Report Abuse
    Tiredofcomplainingnapkins - March 19, 2010 10:48 am
    To Cowboy, Notnapanative, suze,

    How do you know they won't be curing the bricks during a time period when there is not spare the air day? I know we haven't had one in that last 11 days, they might be curing the bricks in the summer time? If you want to run your fireplace 24 hours a day for a 11 straight days or more during the summer then go right ahead, theres no laws prohibiting that
  7. glenroy
    Report Abuse
    glenroy - March 19, 2010 11:49 am
    I think it's silly to use wood.....
  8. Barry Martin
    Report Abuse
    Barry Martin - March 19, 2010 12:00 pm
    To clarify, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District is the agency that creates and administers programs related to air quality. They are the agency that issues "Spare the Air" alerts, not the City of Napa.
    Barry Martin, Community Outreach Coordinator, City of Napa
    707-258-7843
  9. John Richards
    Report Abuse
    John Richards - March 19, 2010 2:30 pm
    Tiredofcomplainingnapkins said: "... they won't be curing the bricks during a time period when there is not spare the air day?"

    OK, forget the 11 days of curing. What I want to know, will this restaurant have their pizza making facility shut down during a Spare the Air day? If not, why not? It all seems so arbitrary and discriminatory.

  10. nightwatchman
    Report Abuse
    nightwatchman - March 19, 2010 5:39 pm
    Does anyone know anyone who has ever been cited for a spare the air violation? Seems like one of those things where most courteous folks won't burn anything if they don't have to, some people may have to, but it still gives the air the intended break, no harm, no foul.
  11. rocketman
    Report Abuse
    rocketman - March 19, 2010 7:35 pm
    Cowboy said on: March 19, 2010, 8:44 am
    Yes rocketman woood is exempt to cook, but they're not cooking, they're curing bricks for 11 days... Their setup budget should include a hefty fine for those 11 days...
    ..........and if there is ANYTHING in the general vacinity that is "cookable" they are exempt.........
  12. John Richards
    Report Abuse
    John Richards - March 19, 2010 9:56 pm
    rocketman said: woood is exempt to cook..."

    The point is, WHY should wood be exempt for cooking?
    We were told we could not even fire up a wood barbecue on Spare-the-Air days. Wood used for cooking gives off just as much pollution as wood used for heating.

  13. rocketman
    Report Abuse
    rocketman - March 20, 2010 7:36 am
    John, and my point was not to justify the rules......my point was to point the rule out.............
  14. notanapanative
    Report Abuse
    notanapanative - March 20, 2010 2:30 pm
    Rocketman,

    So if I understand the rule correctly all I have to do is cook something and I can burn anytime I want?

    So if there is a spare the air day next Xmas and I decide to start up the fireplace (as I normally do) all I have to do to ensure no fine is put a marshmallow on a stick and put it in the fire (thereby cooling it)?

    Is that correct according to your understanding of the rules?
  15. notanapanative
    Report Abuse
    notanapanative - March 20, 2010 2:32 pm
    Barry,

    Does the City of Napa have no representation or influence over the BAAQMD?

    You make it sound as if they are a separate entity with no influence by the city!

    Is this correct?

    Please clarify.
  16. notanapanative
    Report Abuse
    notanapanative - March 22, 2010 3:50 pm
    Barry Martin said: "To clarify, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District is the agency that creates and administers programs related to air quality. They are the agency that issues "Spare the Air" alerts, not the City of Napa. Barry Martin, Community Outreach Coordinator, City of Napa707-258-7843"

    Does Napa not have a representative on the BAAQMD?

    The cynic in me has a hard time believing that you are unaware of this when you attempted to deflect ire towards the policies of "Spare The Air" days away from Napa government.

    Now, to be clear we all want clean air, we just want to be able to have a fire in our fireplaces on holidays and not pay for a BAAQMD swat team patrolling the streets (on overtime) looking for fireplace violators who hadn't heard the announcement on the radio, like last Xmas.

    So please Barry, clarify the influence the City of Napa has in BAAQMD.

    I would be happy to be proven wrong, but doubt I will be.
Add Comment
You must Login to comment.

Click here to get an account it's free and quick