Made in Ireland: Charcoal

Oct 11, 2011, 08:03 PM

Throw a few pieces of wood into the fire and you’ve got yourself a nice bit of heat. But do the same thing & restrict the airflow, and you’ve got yourself rocket-fuel - a substance that can heat to nearly 3,000 degrees Celsius, enough to melt iron.

Many of us know charcoal as the smokeless black fuel we use for our summer BBQ’s, but from 5,000 years ago until the 18th Century, charcoal was the fuel that played a vital role in the economy - and everyday lives - of people who lived not only in Ireland, but throughout the world. Put simply, charcoal was the oil or gas of its day.

Well charcoal has been made in Ireland for thousands of years and today, the practice of turning freshly cut wood into charcoal is having something of a comeback.

Ella McSweeney has been to Laois & Westmeath to hear from people who are passionate about charcoal. #charcoal #energy #farm #farming #forests #ireland #irish #kilbeggan #laois #rte #westmeath #wood #woodlands