Responsible debris burning practices
Understand how to safely burn debris and get your debris burning permit in California.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: During specific times and in certain areas, homeowners may burn landscape debris. However, you must do so safely and compliantly.
Landscape debris burning
Proper debris burning prevents wildfire
The risks of improper debris burning
Improper debris burning can quickly escalate into a wildfire, endangering communities and natural habitats. Recognizing and mitigating these risks through safe debris burning practices is crucial for preventing potential disasters and preserving our environment.
Before burning debris, you need to secure a burn permit from your local fire station or air district and confirm that there are no current burning restrictions in your area.
Get your debris burning permit
CAL FIRE Online Burn Permits are now available in some areas of California. To find out if online permits are available in your area, click the link below.
How to burn landscape debris responsibly
Follow the steps below to make sure you’re burning landscape debris safely, effectively, and responsibly.
Keep a close eye on weather conditions and the dryness of surrounding vegetation. It’s safer to postpone debris burning during windy or very dry conditions to avoid accidental wildfire spread.
To find out if outdoor burning is allowed on a particular day, you must contact your local air quality management district. They provide daily updates on burn day status, ensuring that burning is conducted safely and in accordance with air quality regulations.
Only dry, natural vegetation that has grown on your property may be burned in open piles. This is subject to local ordinances, which may have additional restrictions. It’s important to note that burning household trash or garbage outdoors is strictly prohibited at residences.
Limit piles to 4 feet by 4 feet to manage the burn easily.
Do not exceed a 4-foot diameter to ensure control over the fire.
Remove all flammable materials within 10 feet of the pile to prevent unintended spreading.
Keep water and a shovel nearby to extinguish the fire if necessary.
A responsible adult must be present to monitor the fire until it is completely out.