Changes to burning in the open

The Environment Protection (Air Quality) Policy 2016 (the Policy) came into effect on 23 July 2016. This Policy is applicable only outside of the fire danger season. Please click here for information on burning restrictions during the fire danger season (1 December - 30 April).

The Policy was created by the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) following a consultation period in late 2015 and early 2016 to consolidate a number of existing policies and guidelines with the intent of better protecting and improving the health of South Australians and our environment through improved air quality. The Policy regulates air emissions including those from wood heaters and burning in the open.

Click here to download the Environment Protection (Air Quality) Policy 2016
Click here for Frequently Asked Questions
Click here to download a Permit Application Form

Find information about air quality and the health effects of smoke at:
Air Quality Fact Sheet: Particles (Department of the Environment and Heritage 2005)
Air Quality Fact Sheet: Smoke from biomass burning (Department of the Environment and Heritage 2005)
Environment Protection Authority Air Quality Learning Resources

Wood Heaters

  • The Policy includes rules regulating the sale and installation of wood heaters to target health impacts associated with smoke from wood heaters.
  • The Policy requires compliance with various Australian Standards for the sale and installation of all wood heaters, ensuring that wood heaters are engineered to operate efficiently, decreasing emissions to the atmosphere.
  • The Policy requires firewood retailers do not sell domestic firewood with a moisture content of greater than 25% (dry weight) to protect the community against excessive smoke from burning of inappropriate fuel.
  • There is also a requirement that the owner of a solid fuel heater does not allow excessive smoke to be generated from the heater.

Burning in the Open
A number of changes are now in place in relation to burning in the open following the introduction of the Policy including bushfire hazard reduction, disposal of agricultural and forestry waste and backyard burning in townships. These changes and others, are highlighted in the Frequently Asked Questions below. 

Notable Changes

  • Under the Policy, property owners within Townships (across the Adelaide Hills Council district) require approval from the Council to undertake burning for bushfire hazard reduction and for disposal of agricultural and forestry waste. (See below maps to identify if your property falls within a Township).
  • The EPA has issued the Council a permit in accordance with Schedule 6 of the Policy, which allows property owners within the metropolitan area that are also outside of townships to burn for fire hazard reduction and for disposal of agricultural and forestry waste. Burning must comply with CFS codes of practice to ensure that burning is conducted safely.
  • The Adelaide metropolitan area covers a large part of our Council which also includes large areas of high fire risk. Click here to view a map that indicates Township boundaries within metropolitan and non-metropolitan zoned areas in Adelaide Hills Council.
  • Burning in townships that previously occurred Monday to Saturday, 10am to 3pm, is no longer allowed.
  • Inside the metropolitan Adelaide and all townships, only charcoal can be used in a brazier, chiminea or fire pit for heating an outdoor area. No other fuels are permitted.
  • Fires for recreational purposes within township, including camp fires, are not allowed.

Next Steps – Burning in the Open
The Policy provides us with a large amount of flexibility to introduce our own burning controls for bushfire hazard reduction and disposal of agricultural and forestry waste in metropolitan Adelaide. We recognise the need for land managers to undertake burning in the open for bushfire hazard reduction and for primary producers to dispose of agricultural and forestry waste. Accordingly, we are using the flexibility provided by the Policy to the benefit of the community to put in place burning controls that result in no material change for those areas outside of townships located within the Adelaide metropolitan area.

Council can also consider and apply other burning controls believed necessary.

Given it will take some months to develop burning controls, interim arrangements have been put in place with the EPA to ensure burning for bushfire hazard reduction and disposal of agricultural and forestry waste outside of townships within metropolitan Adelaide, can continue as business as usual. 
Click here to download the EPA Burning Permit issued in accordance with clause 6 of the Environment Protection (Air Quality) Policy 2016.

Community Consultation
We will work with and consult the community to ensure that community input is provided and considered in the development of burning in the open controls. The interim arrangements described above will be in place until the community consultation has been completed and Council have developed burning in the open controls for disposal of agricultural and forestry waste, burning off for bushfire hazard reduction and any other burning controls believed necessary.

TOWNSHIPS
Click here to view the map of Adelaide Hills Council district or click on the below detailed township maps to identify if your property is zoned within a township.

​Aldgate
Balhannah
Birdwood
Bridgewater
Charleston
Crafers
Crafers West
Forreston

Gumeracha
Heathfield
Houghton
Kersbrook
Lobethal
Mount Torrens
Mylor
Oakbank

Rostrevor
Stirling
Summertown
Upper Sturt
Uraidla
Woodforde and Teringie
Woodside


FAQs HOW THE CHANGES AFFECT YOU | From 23 July 2016

WITHIN Townships (non-fire danger season)
​FAQ​Y/N​Conditions/Requirements
​Can I use a fire for the preparation of food and beverages?​Yes​No permit or permission required. The fire must be restricted to a size adequate for the preparation of food or beverage.
​Can I use a brazier, chiminea or a fire pit for outdoor domestic heating?​Yes​No permit or permission required. Fuel is restricted to charcoal only.
​Can I still have a campfire in the course of camping, scouting or a similar outdoor recreational activity?​NoNo longer permitted as of 23 July 2016. Council may grant permits in reasonable circumstances. We will be considering criteria, conditions and circumstances in which a permit may be issued and will be consulting with the public in this process.
​Can I still burn agricultural or forestry waste?​Yes​Requires Council approval by individual permit. We will be considering criteria, conditions and circumstances in which a permit may be issued and will be consulting with the public in this process.
​Will I still be able to burn off for bushfire hazard reduction?Yes​Requires Council approval by individual permit. We will be considering criteria, conditions and circumstances in which a permit may be issued and will be consulting with the public in this process.
Other burning in townships​No​No longer permitted unless reasonable circumstances. Requires approval through written consent from Council.


OUTSIDE Metropolitan Adelaide and OUTSIDE Townships (non-fire danger season)

​FAQ​Y/N​Conditions/Requirements
​Can I use a fire for the preparation of food and beverages?​Yes​No permit or permission required. The fire must be restricted to a size adequate for the preparation of food or beverage.
Can I use a brazier, chiminea or a fire pit for outdoor domestic heating?​Yes​No permit or permission required. Fuel is restricted to charcoal, dry timber or other plant material only.
​​Can I still have a campfire in the course of camping, scouting or a similar outdoor recreational activity?​Yes​No permit or permission required.
​Can I still burn agricultural or forestry waste?​Yes​No permit or permission required however burning must be in accordance with CFS Code of Practice for Broad Acre Burning 2015.
​Will I still be able to burn off for bushfire hazard reduction?​Yes​No permit or permission required however burning must be in accordance with CFS Code of Practice for Vegetation pile Burning 2015.
Other​Yes​Seek approval through written consent or general notice by EPA or Council.


WITHIN Metropolitan Adelaide Boundary and OUTSIDE Townships
(non-fire danger season)
The table below describes the current Policy conditions and requirements for burning outside of townships within the Metropolitan Adelaide boundary.

The table provides the interim arrangements put in place by the EPA which supersede the Policy until Council establishes its burning in the open controls for these areas.

The Policy Conditions and Requirements are shown for information only.

​FAQY/N​Policy Conditions and RequirementsInterim Arrangements as of 23 July 2016
​​Can I use a fire for the preparation of food and beverages?​YesNo permit or permission required. The fire must be restricted to a size adequate for the preparation of food or beverage.​No permit or permission required. The fire must be restricted to a size adequate for the preparation of food or beverage.
​Can I use a brazier, chiminea or a fire pit for outdoor domestic heating?​YesNo permit or permission required. Fuel is restricted to charcoal only.No permit or permission required. Fuel restricted to charcoal, dry wood or other dry plant material.
​Can I still have a campfire in the course of camping, scouting or a similar outdoor recreational activity?​YesCouncil approval through individual permit or general notice published in a newspaper.No permit or permission required using charcoal, dry wood or other plant material.
​​Can I still burn agricultural or forestry waste?​YesCouncil approval through individual permit or general notice published in a newspaper. No permit or permission required however burning must be in accordance with CFS Code of Practice for Broad Acre Burning 2015.
​Will I still be able to burn off for bushfire hazard reduction?​YesCouncil approval through individual permit or general notice published in a newspaper.No permit or permission required however burning must be in accordance with CFS Code of Practice for Vegetation pile Burning 2015.
​Other​YesSeek approval through written consent or general notice by EPA or Council.Seek approval through written consent or general notice by EPA or Council.


PERMIT APPLICATION FORM FOR BURNING IN THE OPEN
If your burning activity requires a permit, please download and complete a Permit Application Form.

Lenswood Property
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