Open Burning Smoke Control Regulation
The Province's new Open Burning Smoke Control Regulation (OBSCR) came into effect on September 15th, 2019. The OBSCR governs the burning of vegetative material associated with a range of activities, such as land clearing, forestry operations and agriculture.
Open burning across the province emits the most PM 2.5 relative to other sources and needs to be managed. The new regulations were developed with an emphasis on human health. These regulations set minimum requirements across the province and local government bylaws can be more restrictive.
A number of the regulations apply to outdoor burning, such as:
- setbacks from property lines
- length and time period of burning
- number of burns per year
- ventilation forecasting
With the Province now split into Low, Medium and High Smoke Sensitivity Zones, the majority of the Alberni Valley is located within the High Zone and is subject to stricter burning regulations.
Enforcement is by the Conservation Officer Service and any violation can be reported to the Report All Poachers and Polluters (RAPP) line 1-877-952-7277.
- www.BCLAWS.ca - Open Burning Smoke Control Regulation 0405-2019
- OBSCR General Factsheet
- OBSCR Website
- BC Ventilation Index
- BC Fire Bans & Restrictions
ACRD Burning Bylaws
The Port Alberni Air Quality Council is working collaboratively to improve air quality within the region. The AQC has focused attention on the need for burning regulations within the region to better control the emission of smoke and particulate matter from burning in the rural areas. Presently, there are no comprehensive open burning or woodstove burning bylaws in place in the rural areas of the ACRD.
There are real health impacts relating to poor air quality and a collaborative, regional approach is required in order to effectively respond to air quality concerns from burning in the ACRD.
In April 2020, the ACRD Board endorsed an eight-point public engagement plan to engage with ACRD residents on the two burning bylaws proposed for the region.