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The Green Life: Charcoal, Meet the Chimney Starter

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July 02, 2008

Charcoal, Meet the Chimney Starter

We've explained how you can Green Your Grill by using low emissions cookers like electric grills or solar ovens. But if you're set on grilling with charcoal, we've got some tips:

Briquettes may contain coal dust or other nasty additives, so consider using lump charcoal which is created from chunks of charred wood. Look for brands that are made from sustainably managed trees; Rainforest Alliance's SmartWood program certifies Char-broil products.

Lighter fluid (a petroleum distillate) releases smog-forming volatile organic chemicals (VOCs), so use a chimney starter (a cylindrical, newspaper-filled "chimney") to get those coals hot.

--D.W.

Sources: Grist, Sierra

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