Back Yard Burning


 To protect public health and the environment, there are only certain situations when fires can be lit in NSW. These are: 

◦for hazard reduction work under the Rural Fires Act 1997
◦for recreational purposes such as barbecues or camping
◦for agricultural purposes (other than construction)
◦for fire fighting training provided by an official fire control officer, or
◦if you have approval from the Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH).

Various restrictions apply to the burning of materials under the Protection of the Environment Operations (Clean Air) Regulation 2010.

These restrictions apply to all residential areas of the former Cooma-Monaro Shire.

Restrictions were previously imposed through the Protection of the Environment (Control of Burning) Regulation 2000, and subsequent amendments. 

  1. Under this Regulation, it is an offence to burn ANY materials (including vegetation) either in the open or in an incinerator UNLESS a prior approval is obtained. Applications for approval must be submitted to, and approved by Council PRIOR to any burning activities being undertaken.

The Former Snowy River Shire Council (as many other farming area Councils) chose not to be listed in the Protection of the Environment Operations (Clean Air) Regulation 2010) Schedule 8. This means that residents of the former SRSC does not require and does not issue “Open burning” approvals to burn vegetation.

However members of the public that do burn have general obligations to prevent or minimise air pollution. A person who burns anything in the open or in an incinerator must do so by such practicable means as are necessary to prevent or minimise air pollution. Some means of preventing or minimising air pollution include:

taking into account the potential for smoke impacting on any person having regard to:
◦wind direction,
◦weather conditions,
◦the length of time that the material being burnt is likely to burn,
◦taking reasonable measures to ensure that the material being burnt is not wet,
◦burning only material that is suitable for disposal by burning,
◦having regard to possible effects on human health and the environment
◦Prohibition on burning certain articles