Air Quality

In parts of urban and rural Oregon, burning yard debris continues to be the disposal method of choice for a significant part of the population. Besides smoke that can be seen by an outdoor burn, the activity also emits a number of air pollutants that can adversely affect public health.

Can I burn? 

Depending upon where you live, there may be certain burning prohibitions or restrictions in place. It may be illegal to burn certain types of yard debris in the area where you live, or you may need a permit to burn your yard debris. If you are located in an area that does allow burning you’ll need to check and see if there are any seasonal restrictions.  Additionally, cities, counties and local fire districts also have their own restrictions on open burning. Always check with your local fire department before you burn.
 
While it may be legal in your area, please consider alternatives to burning. 
 
Report illegal burning by calling ​the DEQ complaints hotline, 888-997-7888 or LRAPA.
DEQ Offices
Bend office: 541-388-6146 
Coos Bay office: 541-269-2721 x222 
Medford office: 541-776-6089 
Pendleton office: 541-278-4626 
Portland office: 503-229-5600 
Salem office: 503-378-5085 
Toll-Free: 800-452-4011
 
Lane Regional Air Protection Agency 
541-736-1056 or 877-285-7272 
LRAPA 24-hour line: 541-726-3976 

Burning regulated by other agencies

Prescribed burning, slash burning and smoke management

Prescribed burning is “controlled burning” which involves the process of planning and applying fire to a predetermined area, under specific environmental conditions. Slash burning (burning debris from logging) is limited to burning on forestlands for forest management and is usually managed by the Oregon Department of Forestry. It is not the clearing of forestland for non-forest management related activities.
 
The Oregon Department of Forestry develops and implements a statewide Oregon Smoke Management Plan to keep smoke from prescribed burning, or “controlled burning” into specific areas of the state and to provide maximum opportunity for forestland burning while minimizing emissions.  

Agricultural field burning

Agricultural burning is limited to agricultural waste, such as material generated by an agricultural operation that uses land primarily for the purpose of obtaining a profit in money by raising, harvesting, and selling crops or raising and selling animals.  Agricultural burning can include the burning of residue after harvest of a grass seed or cereal grain crop or clearing of agricultural land.

Resources 

​Burning the following materials is illegal anytime, anywhere in Oregon:
  • Asbestos
  • Asphalt
  • Auto parts (including frames)
  • Dead animals
  • Plastic and rubber products
  • Tires
  • Waste oil, petroleum materials
  • Wet garbage and food waste
  • Material creating dense smoke or noxious odors.