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Burning Coal in Sacramento, CA

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Posted · Report post

Hey everyone, got a question for mainly the Northern California people, but if you have any info, any and all would be appreciated.
Last weekend, a coworker went to a gun show in the greater Sacramento area and met a guy who is a blacksmith in Sacramento who said my name sounded familiar (only guessing said individual is a member of this forum). In any case, my coworker asked if he used coal in his forge and was told that it's illegal to burn coal in Sacramento (whether it be City or County, I don't know).

I've scoured the internet and have only been able to find documentation/legislation on coal powered industrial operations, such as power plants, cement factories, etc. Does anyone know if it's illegal to burn small quantities of coal (under 25-50 lbs per month) in either the city of Sacramento, or Sacramento county? I'd hate to have to switch back to charcoal!!

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Posted · Report post

Contact the California Air Resource Board. Tell them you are a hobby smith working outside (open air). I bet they tell there are no rules for that except on "spare the air days"
I'm not suggesting you lie to them but I am suggesting you withhold specific identifying information. Not that California has the money to chase down violators, It seems they are fining people into oblivion given the opportunity.

A friend in Reno who has a smtihing and metal fab business can use coal in his back yard but he can't use it for business in his shop....

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Posted · Report post

I'm not in Sacto, but the East Bay of the San Francisco Area. When I checked with the AQMD (Air Quality Management District) a few years ago, I was told less than a half TON of coal on the premises is too small for regulatory control.

I work with firefighters a lot in my day job, and (at least around here) it comes down to the neighbors. If there are complaints, you have a problem, no complaints, no problem.

Good cause to make nice with the neighbors, let them know who you are, what you do. Perhaps a plant hook or steak turner type peace offering.

I work mostly with charcoal, but when I do use coal (Lazzari in Burlingame, 50 lb bags), that initial yellow green plume of smoke has gotten a few neighbors running over the check for a tire fire in the back yard. Mid day on a weekend I'll look over the fence and give a heads up to any neighbors out there.

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Posted · Report post

Thanks, guys.
I'm going to try calling the "air police" of Sacramento county as well as the California Air Resources Board with a "general" inquiry. I'm going to tell them that "...I'm interested in getting into blacksmithing and need to know the regulations regarding the burning of coal..." (although I'm not going to tell them that I burned about 5 lbs. last weekend and the weekend before that, and the weekend before that...) The "under a 1/2 ton" sounds familiar, although I'm at a loss as to where I found that.

As for my neighbors, the ones directly to my right/left know what's up and don't care--one's dad used to be a smith and she actually *likes* the sound of my anvil. I've made various items for the other one, including S-hooks for the hanging plants they have, a heart for valentines day, and some BBQ tooling.

-Chris

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