Open Burning...

 

OHIO OPEN BURNING REGULATIONS

When you burn trash outdoors, the potential cost to your health, your home, your neighbors, and your environment far exceeds the price of adequate collection services. Protect yourself, your neighbors, and your wallet by knowing the rules what you can burn and where. And remember, there are alternatives to open burning.

Q: What does Ohio EPA consider "open burning"?

You are open burning any time you light an outdoor fire. In the past, many materials--including leaves, tree trimmings, tires, and construction debris--were routinely burned outdoors.

Q: Why do Ohio's prohibit so many kinds of open burning?

Depending upon the material being burned, open fires can release many kinds of toxic fumes. Leaves and plant materials send aloft millions of spores when they catch fire, causing many people with allergies to have difficulty breathing. The pollutants released by open burning also make it more difficult to attain, or maintain, health-based air quality standards, especially in or near the major metropolitan centers. The gases released by open burning can also harm neighboring buildings by corroding metal siding and damaging paint. Besides, open burning is not a very efficient way to get rid of wastes since open fires do not get hot enough to burn the materials completely.

Q: What materials can never be burned?

Some materials may not be burned anywhere in the state at any time. These are:

Q: Where is burning illegal?

With a few exceptions, open burning is not permitted in a restricted area. Restricted areas include:

Q: What types of open burning are permitted anywhere?

A few types of open burning are permitted everywhere, even in restricted areas. Fires must be kept to a minimum size for their intended purpose, and shall not be used for waste disposal purposes.

Within a Restricted Area

Permitted burning includes:

By notifying Ohio EPA in advance ceremonial fires can be set for limited periods of time. Fires must be limited in size to 5 feet by 5 feet and may not burn for more than three hours. Under certain circumstances, fires set to train firefighters, to dispose of certain ignitable or explosive materials, or to dispose of poisons such as pesticides and their containers are allowed WITH PRIOR WRITTEN PERMISSION FROM OHIO EPA. Recognized horticultural, silvicultural, range, or wildlife management practices, involving burning, also are allowed with prior written permission from Ohio EPA.

This permission may take two weeks to obtain. Ohio EPA is represented by five district offices and ten local air agencies. See the back of the brochure for the agency to contact in your area. Fires intended to control disease or pests may be set if the local health department, the Ohio Department of Agriculture, or the U.S. Department of Agriculture verifies to Ohio EPA that open burning is the only appropriate control methods.

Outside a Restricted Area

Outside a restricted area, the following types of wastes generated on the premises can be burned:

However, no open burning can take place within 1,000 feet of an inhabited building located off the property where the fire is set. Nor can the fire obscure visibility for roadways, railroad tracks, or air fields.

No wastes generated off the premises may be burned. For example, a tree-trimming contractor may not haul branches and limbs to another site to burn them.

Open burning is prohibited when air pollution warnings, alerts, or emergency re in effect.

Q: Does Ohio EPA ever allow exceptions to the rules?

Under certain circumstances, yes. However, to burn a prohibited material or set a fire in a restricted area, YOU MUST RECEIVE WRITTEN PERMISSION FROM OHIO EPA BEFORE YOU BEGIN BURNING.

Q: Can a community enact local ordinances to allow open burning?

Local ordinances cannot be less strict than the state law described in this pamphlet. They can be more strict, however.

Q: What will happen to me if I'm caught illegally open burning?

Ohio EPA has the legal authority to enforce the open burning laws. Violations can result in substantial penalties. If you have any questions, or would like to report a suspected open burning incident, contact your Ohio EPA district office or your local air pollution control agency.

OhioEPA District Offices

Central District Office- 614-728-3778

Northeast District Office- 330-963-1200

Northwest District Office- 419-352-8461

Southeast District Office- 740-385-8501

Southwest District Office- 937-285-6357

For a complete copy of Ohio's open burning regulations, contact:

Division of Air Pollution Control

Ohio EPA

Lazarus Government Center

P.O. Box 1049

Columbus, Ohio 43216-1049

614-644-2270

-- September 2000, OhioEPA's Before You Light it...Knowing Ohio's Open Burning Regulations

OPEN BURNING STATUTES

Ohio Administrative Code 3745-19-01 Definitions

As used in Chapter 3745-19 of the Administrative Code:

(A)  "Agricultural waste" means any matter generated by crop, horticultural, or livestock production 

        practices, and includes such items as bags, cartons, structural materials, and landscape wastes 

        that are generated in agricultural activities, but does not include land clearing waste; buildings; 

        garbage;  dead animals; motor vehicles and parts thereof; nor economic poisons and containers 

        thereof, unless the manufacturer had identified open burning as a safe disposal procedure.

 

(B)  "Economic poisons" include but are not restricted to pesticides such as insecticides, fungicides,

        rodenticides, miticides, nematocides and fumigants; herbicides; seed disinfectants; and defoliants.

 

(C)  "Garbage" means any matter resulting from the handling, processing preparation, cooking and

        consumption of food or food products.

 

(D)  "Landscape waste" means any plant matter, except garbage, including trees, tree trimmings, 

        branches, stumps, brush, weeds, leaves, grass, shrubbery, yard trimmings, and crop residues.

 

(E)  "Land clearing waste" means plant matter which is removed from land, including plant matter 

        removed from stream banks during projects involving more than one property owner, for the 

        purpose of rendering the land useful for residential, commercial, or industrial development.

 

(F)  "Ohio EPA" means the Ohio environmental protection agency director or agencies delegated 

        authority by the director of the Ohio environmental protection agency pursuant to section 

        3704.03 of the Revised Code or the chief of any Ohio environmental protection agency district 

        office.

 

(G)   "Open burning" means the burning of any materials wherein air contaminants resulting from 

        combustion are emitted directly into the ambient air without passing through a stack or chimney. 

        Open burning includes the burning of any refuse or salvageable material in any device not subject 

        to or designed specifically to comply with the requirements of rule 3745-17-09 or 3745-17-10

        of the Administrative Code.

 

(H)  "Residential waste" means any matter, including landscape wastes, generated on a one-, two- 

        or three-family residence as a result of residential activities, but not including garbage.

 

(I)  "Restricted area" means the area within the boundary of any municipal corporation established 

        in accordance with the provisions of Title 7 of the Revised Code, plus a zone extending one 

        thousand feet beyond the boundaries of any such municipal corporation having a population 

        of one thousand to ten thousand persons and a zone extending one mile beyond any such 

        municipal corporation having a population of ten thousand persons or more according to the 

        latest federal census.

 

(J)   "Unrestricted area" means all areas outside the boundaries of a restricted area as defined in 

        paragraph (I) of this rule.

        Effective date: December 20, 1988, Promulgated under: RC Chapter 119 Rule amplifies: RC 

        Chapter 3704 Rule authorized by: RC Section 3704.03 Prior effective date:6/21/76, 10/30/87

3745-19-02 Relations to other prohibitions.

(A)   Notwithstanding any provision in Chapter 3745-19 of the Administrative Code, no open burning 

        shall be conducted in an area where an air alert, warning, or emergency under Chapter 3745-25 

        of the Administrative Code is in effect.

 

(B)   No provisions of Chapter 3745-19 of the Administrative Code, permitting open burning, and no

        permission to open burn granted by the Ohio EPA, shall exempt any person from compliance with 

        any section of the Revised Code, or any regulation of any state department, or any local ordinance 

        or regulation dealing with open burning.

        Effective Date: October 20, 1987. Promulgated under: RC Chapter 119 Rule amplifies: RC 

        Chapter 3704 Rule authorized by: RC Section 3704.03 Prior effective date: 9/21/73

3745-19-03 Open burning in restricted areas.

(A)  No person or property owner shall cause or allow open burning in a restricted area except as 

        provided in paragraphs (B) to (D) of this rule or in section 3704.11 of the Revised Code.

 

(B)  Open burning shall be allowed for the following purposes without notification to or permission 

        from the EPA:

                (1) Cooking for human consumption;

                (2) Heating tar, welding, acetylene torches, highway safety flares, heating for warmth of 

                      outdoor workers and strikers, smudge pots and similar occupational needs.

       Fires allowed by paragraphs (B)(1) and (B)(2) of this rule shall not be used for waste disposal 

       purposes and shall be of minimum size sufficient for their intended purpose; the fuel shall be 

       chosen to minimize the generation and emission of air contaminants.

 

 (C)  Open burning shall be allowed for the following purposes with prior notification to the Ohio EPA:

                (1) Prevention or control of disease or pests, with written or verbal verification to the 

                     Ohio EPA from the local health department, cooperative extension service, Ohio 

                     department of agriculture, or U.S. department of agriculture, that open burning is 

                     the only appropriate disposal method.

                (2) Ceremonial fires provided the following conditions are met:

                        (a) The ceremonial fires shall be less than five feet by five feet in dimension and shall 

                              burn no longer than three hours;

                        (b) The ceremonial fires shall not be used for waste disposal purposes; and

                        (c) The fuel shall be chosen so as to minimize the generation and emission of air 

                              contaminants.

 

(D)  Open burning shall be allowed for the following purposes upon receipt of written permission 

        from the Ohio EPA provided that any conditions specified in the permission are followed:

                (1) Disposal of ignitable or explosive materials where the Ohio EPA determines that there 

                      is no practical alternate method of disposal;

                (2) Instruction in methods of fire fighting or for research in the control of fires;

                (3) In emergency or other extraordinary circumstances for any purpose determined to 

                      be necessary by the Ohio EPA; and

                (4) Recognized horticultural, silvicultural, range, or wildlife management practices.

                     Effective date: December 20, 1988 Promulgated under: RC Chapter 119 Rule 

                     amplifies: RC Chapter 3704 Rule authorized by: RC Section 3704.03 Prior effective

                    date:6/21/76, 10/30/87

3745-19-04 Open burning in unrestricted areas

(A)   No person or property owner shall cause or allow open burning in an unrestricted area except as

        provided in paragraphs (B) to of this rule or in section 3704.11 of the Revised Code.

(B)   Open burning shall be allowed for the following purposes without notification to or permission 

        from the Ohio EPA:

                (1) Cooking for human consumption;

                (2) Heating tar, welding, acetylene torches, highway safety flares, heating for warmth of 

                      outdoor workers and strikers, smudge pots and similar occupational needs.

        Fires allowed by paragraphs (B)(1) and (B)(2) of this rule shall not be used for waste disposal 

        purposes, and shall be of the minimum size sufficient for their intended purpose; the fuel shall be 

        chosen to minimize the generation and emission of air contaminants.

                (3) Disposal of residential waste or agricultural waste generated on the premises if the 

                      following conditions are observed:

                            (a) The fire is set only when atmospheric conditions will readily dissipate 

                                  contaminants;

                            (b) The fire does not create a visibility hazard on the roadways, railroad tracks, or 

                                  air fields;

                            (c) The fire is located at a point on the premises no less than one thousand feet from 

                                  any inhabited building not located on said premises;

                            (d) The wastes are stacked and dried to provide the best practicable condition for 

                                  efficient  burning; and

                            (e) No materials are burned which contain rubber, grease, asphalt or liquid petroleum

                                  products.

                (4) Ceremonial purposes, if the following conditions are met:

                            (a) The ceremonial fires shall be less than five feet by five feet in dimension and shall 

                                 burn no longer than three hours;

                            (b) The ceremonial fires shall not be used for waste disposal purposes; and

                            (c) The fuel shall be chosen so as to minimize the generation and emission of air

                                  contaminants.

 

(C)  Open burning shall be allowed for the following purposes upon receipt of written permission from 

        the Ohio EPA provided that any conditions specified in the permission are followed:

                (1) Disposal of ignitable or explosive materials where the Ohio EPA determines that there is 

                      no practical alternate method of disposal;

                (2) Instruction in methods of fire fighting or for research in the control of fire;

                (3) In emergency or other extraordinary circumstances for any purpose determined to be 

                      necessary by the Ohio EPA;

                (4) Disposal of land clearing waste if the following conditions are observed:

                            (a) The fire is set only when atmospheric conditions will readily dissipate 

                                  contaminants;

                            (b) The fire does not create a visibility hazard on roadways, railroad tracks, or 

                                  air fields;

                            (c) The fire is located at a point on the premises no less than one thousand feet 

                                  from any inhabited building not located on said premises; and

                            (d) An air curtain destructor or other device or method determined by the director 

                                  to be at least as effective is used to curtail release of air contaminants; and

                (5) Recognized horticultural, silvicultural, range, or wildlife management practices.

 

(D)   Open burning shall be allowed for the prevention or control of disease or pests with written or 

        verbal verification to the Ohio EPA from the local health department, cooperative extension 

        service, Ohio department of agriculture, or U.S. department of agriculture, that open burning is

        the only appropriate disposal method.

        Effective Date: December 20, 1988 Promulgated under RC Chapter 119 Rule amplifies: RC 

        Chapter 3704 Rule authorized by: RC Section 3704.03 Prior effective date- 6/21/76, 10/30/87

3745-19-05 Permission to individuals and notification to the Ohio EPA

(A) Permission:

                (1) An application for permission to open burn shall be submitted in writing at least ten 

                     days before the fire is to be set. It shall be in such form and contain such information 

                     as required by the Ohio EPA.

                (2) Such applications shall contain, as a minimum, information regarding:

                            (a) The purpose of the proposed burning;

                            (b) The nature of quantities of material to be burned;

                            (c) The date or dates when such burning will take place;

                            (d) The location of the burning site, including a map showing distances to residences,

                                  populated areas, roadways, air fields, and other pertinent landmarks; and

                            (e) The methods or actions which will be taken to reduce the emissions of air

                                 contaminants.

                (3) Permission to open burn shall not be granted unless the applicant demonstrates to the

                      satisfaction of the Ohio EPA that open burning is necessary to the public interest; will be

                      conducted in a time, place, and manner as to minimize the emission of air contaminants; 

                      and will have no serious detrimental effect upon adjacent properties or the occupants 

                      thereof. The Ohio EPA may impose such conditions as may be necessary to accomplish 

                      the purpose of Chapter 3745-19 of the Administrative Code.

                (4) Permission to open burn must be obtained for each specific project. In emergencies 

                      where public health or environmental quality will be seriously threatened by delay while 

                      written permission sought, the fire may be set with oral permission of the Ohio EPA.

                      3745-19-05              

                (5) Violations of any of the conditions set forth by the Ohio EPA in granting permission to 

                      open burn shall be grounds for revocation of such permission and refusal to grant future

                      permission, as well as for the imposition of other sanctions provided by law.

 

(B) Notification:

                (1) Notification shall be submitted in writing at least ten days before the fire is to be set. It 

                      shall be in such form and contain such information as shall be required by the Ohio EPA.

                (2) Such notification shall inform the Ohio EPA regarding:

                            (a) The purpose of the proposed burning;

                            (b) The nature and quantities of materials to be burned;

                            (c) The date or dates when such burning will take place; and

                            (d) The location of the burning site.

                (3) The Ohio EPA, after receiving notification, may determine that the open burning is not 

                     allowed under Chapter 3745-19 of the Administrative Code and the Ohio EPA shall 

                     notify the applicant to this effect.

                     Effective Date: October 30, 1987. Promulgated under: RC Chapter 119 Rule amplifies: 

                     RC Chapter 3704 Rule authorized by: RC Section 3704.03 Prior effective date: 9/21/73

-- May 1996, Ohio EPA