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What you need to know about Georgia's annual ban on outdoor burning

The Georgia Environmental Protection Division's 2022 burn ban runs from May 1 to Sept. 30

MACON, Ga. — Georgia's annual ban on outdoor burning begins Sunday, May 1, and runs through the end of September.

According to a press release, the ban prohibits people and businesses from burning yard and land-clearing debris during the summer ozone season, which runs from May 1 through Sept. 30 in select counties.

In Central Georgia, the counties impacted include Bibb, Houston, Peach, Monroe, Twiggs, Jones, Jasper, Putnam, Crawford, Upson, and Lamar.

This is in addition to the rule that prohibits the burning of household garbage. Burning household garbage is never allowed anywhere in Georgia. 

In the counties listed above, the following types of burns are banned: 

  • Burn Type 1 - Reduction of Leaves on Premises of Origin: Reduction of leaves on the premises on which they fall by the person in control of the premises, unless prohibited by local ordinance and/or regulation.
  • Burn Type 7 - Acquired Structure Burns: Acquired structure burns provided that an Authorization to Burn certificate has been issued by the Environmental Protection Division.
  • Burn Type 8 - Vegetative Debris from Storms: Disposal of vegetative debris from storm damage.
  • Burn Type 9 - Weed Abatement, Disease and Pest Prevention: For weed abatement, disease, and pest prevention.
  • Burn Type 11 - Land Clearing, Construction, and Right-of-Way Maintenance
  • Burn Type 13 – Land Clearing – Burning With Air Curtain Destructor

“We typically see air quality issues in Georgia during the summer because the hot weather helps to create ground-level ozone,” said Karen Hays, Chief of the EPD Air Protection Branch. “Ozone pollution can cause inflammation of the lungs and can lead to other health-related issues. Smoke from fires contains fine particles that can aggravate asthma and chronic heart diseases.”

Recreational activities such as campfires and grilling are exempt from the open burning ban.  

The open burning ban has been in place during the summer ozone season since 2005.

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