Council is warning of on the spot fines for backyard burn offs in residential areas of the Eurobodalla this winter.
Eurobodalla Shire Council is reminding locals that open burning in residential areas, particularly of rubbish and green vegetation, is not permitted.
Nathan Ladmore, Acting Environmental Services Manager says this includes burning dead and dry vegetation in incinerators and bonfires.
“Burning rubbish, leaf litter and other vegetation at residential premises causes smoke, [which can result] in poor localised air quality, environmental nuisance and harm to human health,” he says.
“Smoke can have significant impacts on young people and the elderly, as well as people with pre-existing respiratory issues such as asthma.”
In NSW, backyard burning is regulated by the Protection of the Environment Operations (Clean Air) Regulation 2010.
The Regulation does allow for some exemptions for small fires, including for cooking or recreational purposes, covering things like fire-pits, braziers, pizza ovens and barbecues.
Council also oversees its own Clean Air Policy to protect the environment and health and amenity of residents and visitors by outlining conditions where burning can take place.
“Burning vegetation is restricted to areas that are a safe distance away from major roads, infrastructure, and residential areas,” Mr Ladmore says.
In those situations, “at least 24 hours before burning, you must notify the NSW RFS Fire Control Centre and adjoining neighbours of your intention to burn.”
Council officers and the RFS can take action for breaches of the regulations, including on-the-spot fines.
One option other than burning in residential areas are the shire’s green top organics bin or backyard composting.