Tumour initiation tests on mice: wood smoke 30 times more potent than cigarette smoke. The review by Naeher notes: “Organic extracts of ambient particulate matter (PM) containing substantial quantities of woodsmoke are 30- fold more potent than extracts of cigarette smoke condensate in a mouse skin tumor induction assay (Cupitt et al., 1994)”US National Toxicology Program, Report on Carcinogens, Eleventh Edition (2005) Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons "The primary source of PAHs in air is the incomplete combustion of wood and fuel for residential heating."
Comparison of Toxic Chemicals in Wood and Cigarette Smoke (Pdf file for download, several pages of useful info)
Burning 15 kg of wood (an evening's heat) creates more health-hazardous PAH than in 240,000 cigarettes. Burning Armidale's average of 4 tonnes per year produces more hazardous PAH than 64 million cigarettes.
Burning 15 kg wood also produces as much PM2.5 as 7,500 cigarettes.
Genetic damage in babies and reduced IQ at age 5 from PAH exposure Comparison of pollution from the average passenger car and the average wood heater.
Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAH) "The primary source of PAHs in air is the incomplete combustion of wood and fuel for residential heating." US National Toxicology Program, Report on Carcinogens, Eleventh Edition (2005)
Comparison of PAHs and other chemicals covered by the Australian Air Toxics or Air Quality National Environment Protection Measure (NEPM) in wood and cigarette smoke (from: comparison of Toxic Chemicals in Wood and Cigarette Smoke )
Woodsmoke Pollution and Your Healthvideo featuring Dr Jim Markos, lung specialist & Chairman of the Tasmanian Branch of the Australian Lung Foundation