A Branch of the Georgia Environmental Protection Division

Non-summer Legal Burn Types

A map of Georgia highlighting non-summer burn types.

The following is a list of those types of open burning that are legal in the state of Georgia. Please note that the burning of garbage or lumber, even in a burn barrel, is illegal.

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 2 - Agricultural Procedures for Production or Harvesting of Crops

Carrying out recognized agricultural procedures necessary for production or harvesting of crops

Burn Type 3 - Prescribed Burning

The “prescribed burning” of any land by the owners or the owner’s designee.

Burn Type 4 - [Reserved]

Burn Type 5 - Recreational Purposes and Cooking

For recreational purposes or cooking food for immediate human consumption.

Burn Type 6 - Fire-fighting Training

Fires set for purposes of training fire-fighting personnel when authorized by the appropriate governmental entity.

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 10 - Open-flame Devices

Operation of devices using open flames such as tar kettles, blow torches, welding torches, portable heaters and other flame-making equipment.

Burn Type 11 - Land Clearing, Construction, and Right-of-Way Maintenance

Open burning for the purpose of land clearing or construction or right-of-way maintenance provided the following conditions are met:

(i) Prevailing winds at the time of the burning are away from the major portion of the area's population;

(ii) The location of the burning is at least 1,000 feet from any occupied structure, or lesser distance if approved by the Division;

(iii) The amount of dirt on or in the material being burned is minimized;

(iv) Heavy oils, asphaltic materials, items containing natural or synthetic rubber, or any materials other than plant growth are not being burned; and

(v) No more than one pile 60 feet by 60 feet, or equivalent, is being burned within a 9-acre area at one time.

Burn Type 12 - Packaging Materials for Explosives

Disposal of all packaging materials previously containing explosives, in accordance with U.S. Department of Labor Safety Regulations.

Burn Type 13 – Land Clearing – Burning With Air Curtain Destructor

Open burning of vegetative material for the purpose of land clearing using an air curtain destructor provided the following conditions are met:

(i) Authorization for such open burning is received from the fire department, if required, having local jurisdiction over the open burning location prior to initiation of any open burning at such location;

(ii) The location of the air curtain destructor is at least 300 feet from any occupied structure or public road. Air curtain destructors used solely for utility line clearing or road clearing may be located at a lesser distance upon approval by the Division;

(iii) No more than one air curtain destructor is operated within a ten (10) acre area at one time or there must be at least 1000 feet between any two air curtain destructors;

(iv) Only wood waste consisting of trees, logs, large brush and stumps which are relatively free of soil are burned in the air curtain destructor;

(v) Tires or other rubber products, plastics, heavy oils or asphaltic based or impregnated materials are not used to start or maintain the operation of the air curtain destructor;

(vi) The air curtain destructor is constructed, installed and operated in a manner consistent with good air pollution control practice for minimizing emissions of fly ash and smoke;

(vii) The cleaning out of the air curtain destructor pit is performed in a manner to prevent fugitive dust; and

(viii) The air curtain destructor cannot be fired before 10:00 a.m. and the fire must be completely extinguished, using water or by covering with dirt, at least one hour before sunset.