Portable Fire Extinguishers Dramatically Reduce the Carbon Footprint of Building Fires

Posted by Commercial Fire Blog Team on Nov 10, 2023

CF - Image - 266602 – Blog – FEMA Sustainability Study Blog Post

FEMA (Fire Equipment Manufacturers’ Association) recently commissioned a new study on the role portable extinguishers play in reducing carbon monoxide in a building with automatic sprinklers. It found that portable fire extinguishers can reduce fire-related CO2 in a building by over 93% beyond sprinklers on their own. When sprinklers and portable extinguishers are used together, fire-related carbon emissions are cut by 99%. 

The benefits of adding fire extinguishers to a building’s fire protection to reduce its carbon footprint can readily be seen when evaluating emergency response to a fire. These can be categorized into three areas:

1) Extinguishers for the earliest stage of fire,

2) Automatic fire sprinklers if the fire grows, and

3) Fire departments if the other two fail.

Consequently, carbon emissions increase each time there is a delay in putting out the fire. With that said, fire extinguishers offer the highest reduction of carbon emissions of any emergency fire response when used early. What’s more, studies show portable fire extinguishers, when used early, not only reduce the carbon footprint during a fire but also reduce carbon emissions during reconstruction. 

This new study assesses the value of installing and using portable fire extinguishers to reduce carbon emissions during a fire over a building’s lifetime. It’s well known that fire extinguishers extinguish hundreds of thousands of fires every year. When used by building occupants before automatic sprinklers activate or the fire department arrives, carbon emissions can be drastically curtailed. 

Click Here to read the complete study.

“Many people may not realize the impact or importance of Fire Extinguishers in the reduction of our carbon footprint. Thanks to this new study from FEMA, more people can now come away with a better understanding.” 

-Mark Murray, President, Commercial Fire

Topics: Multi-Site Facilities, Fire Extinguishers, Fire Safety, Carbon Footprint