Q: Are wood burning fireplaces really bad for the environment?

How bad are wood-burning fireplaces for the environment? Is it really that bad if you have a handful of fires a year? What about Duraflames or Java Logs? Is it okay to burn those?

We are remodeling our family room. My wife wants to get a gas burning system for our fire place. ...Is the impact of our 5 or 6 fires a year really that bad??? I much prefer the real deal to fake logs. And, we typically (except Christmas) use duraflames.

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