The Firewood Defense Fund
Our right to burn firewood is in danger.
My goal is to create a non-profit organization - the Firewood Defense Fund - to combat the negative press and misconceptions about burning wood. You can learn more about our messaging at our website: NationalFirewoodAssociation.org .
Without any organized defense for firewood, the right to burn wood is left in the hands of anyone but us.
This may be your only chance to make a difference.
My experience with the National Firewood Association (NFA) has shown that there is no one else interested in taking on these issues.
I have spent more than five years talking to firewood professionals at every level. Our members range from "two guys with a splitter" to those who produce thousands of cords per year.
In this position, I came to recognize the significant challenge firewood faces in the public sphere. Unlike any other product, firewood has no political lobby to represent it when laws are being made. It has no PR firms or ad agencies to educate the public or promote it as a legitimate, sustainable alternative fuel for millions in the U.S.
It is estimated that about two-thirds of the people who burn wood harvest it themselves. The remaining one-third are customers of firewood producers.
Do you see the problem?
The firewood industry is very small and includes no billionaires. There's simply not enough money in firewood to fund national campaigns on behalf of the millions who burn wood. That's why I'm asking for your help to develop the Firewood Defense Fund.
The danger to firewood.
When regulations and bans are under discussion, there is no authority to speak on behalf of firewood. We simply assume our rights will be protected as citizens.
Are you confident that your rights will be protected when the right to burn wood is under discussion at your county board meeting or state Capitol? Wouldn't you feel better if someone was there to make sure?
Have you noticed that the only messaging you hear regarding firewood in the media is negative? Don't move it, don't cut it, don't burn it. There are no ads mentioning that it is a 100% renewable, local source of heating fuel.
The Firewood Defense Fund. Proceeds from this goal of $50,000 will go toward the formal creation of the fund as a 501(c)3 non-profit - which will allow any future contributions to be tax-deductible. This is essential to securing further support and receiving larger contributions.
Funds will be used over a one-year timeline to:
1. Create and staff the FDF as a legitimate non-profit organization.
2. Generate publicity for the FDF online and in the media. A lion's share of the funds will be used to buy airtime and online ad campaigns.
3. Begin second round of fundraising.
$50,000 is only a fraction of what would be make a large impact. But it is enough to get the ball rolling, spread publicity for our cause and attract more support.
If you're thinking that a million-dollar annual budget sounds excessive, consider that the National Rifle Association's annual budget is $300 million.
We need your help.
I know that most people who burn wood aren't rich. But if with a few dollars from a lot of people, the FDF can and will succeed - and firewood will have a voice to defend it.
We need your voice.
Just as important as making a donation is spreading the word about about us. Encourage your friends and family to make a small donation, too.
Is $10 too much to ask?
Just $10 from a 50,000 supporters would allow the Firewood Defense Fund to gain a foothold.
How about $25 or $50?
Remember that corporate America is against us, along with the well-funded clean air lobby and various environmental groups.
About 2.5 million homes in the U.S. are heated primarily with firewood. That's a tiny percentage, but considering the average household might spend $1000/year on heating fuel otherwise, that's a quarter of a $BILLION.
Do you think the petroleum or electric companies will go out of their way to protect your rights to burn wood?
Is firewood really environmentally responsible?
Absolutely. When you consider the "externalities" of oil extraction, electric generation or even the manufacture and eventual disposal of solar equipment and batteries, firewood makes sense in every part of the country near a forest.
It is not suited for densely-populated urban areas. We've known that for 100 years now. It can't be argued that gas burns cleaner, or that firewood isn't prohibitively expensive to transport long distances.
But it does not involve fracking or pipelines or questionable agreements with foreign countries. The most important aspect of firewood is that you can make it yourself.
Another point about the environment.
Poor education regarding wood burning is responsible for most of the air-quality problems that cause neighbors to protest.
A widespread educational campaign regarding how to identify dry wood and proper burning techniques could solve more issues than a stove changeout program. (Easy conclusion - the most efficient stove will smoke like the dickens with green wood and poor operating practices).
The bottom line.
Firewood is freedom. If you have a wood stove and access to a nearby forest, your "fuel security" is guaranteed. It allows true self-sufficiency.
The long version.
Firewood is one more way you can unplug from the grid - and also "the cloud." Do you really like it that your energy usage is being recorded, analyzed, and reported by the month -- or in the case of electricity -- by the hour?
Firewood powered the world from the stone age through the industrial age. People seem to forget that we wouldn't be here without firewood. It cooked the first hot meal on earth, and it will no doubt cook the last.
At the time your grandparents were born, half of the vehicles in Europe had been converted to burn wood due to fuel supply interruptions caused by WWII. That might sound absurd, but it's true.
It is far too early in the technology race to abandon firewood. It has served and saved mankind for millenia.
Let rural America heat with wood and millions of people will remain safe from the most common and threatening failure in today's infrastructure -- an extended power outage due to weather. How's your confidence in the weather these days?
These are the reasons firewood needs a defense fund.
Please consider a donation, and please start a conversation in your neighborhood about the importance of firewood.
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