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Outdoor Burning

Smoke from outdoor burning contributes to our region's air pollution and can be harmful to the health of our residents. The burning of certain materials can result in toxic particulates and by-products that are dangerous to breathe. To protect public health and our region's air quality, outdoor burning in Sacramento is limited by a number of regulations.

Outdoor burning includes open burning, recreational burning, agricultural burning and prescribed burning. You can find additional details and information about requirements and exemptions in the sections below. While certain exemptions are found in each rule, it is important to note that there is no exemption from burns that create a public nuisance per Sac Metro Air District Rule 402.

For more information about outdoor burning contact our burning information line at (916) 874-4244.

Sac Metro Air District staff are not first responders and do not extinguish fires.   Contact your local fire department. 

​Open Burning (Rural Yard Burning)

Open burning is illegal in most parts of Sacramento County, including all cities within county boundaries. Areas where open burning is legal in Sacramento County is shown in the Burning Zone Map. Residents living in legal open burning areas may burn provided the following:

      • Residents obtain a residential burn permit from their local fire department
      • Only dry natural vegetation originating from the residence is burned
      • Burning occurs on legal to burn days.  Burn Day status is available by calling the Open Burning Information Line at (916) 874-2876 (BURN)

Burn Day Status:  

      • Open Burning Information Line: (916) 874-2876 (BURN)

Rules that Apply:

​Recreational Burning

Recreational burning includes bonfires and fires used for aesthetic purposes. Residents may recreationally burn provided the following:

    • Burning occurs in open pits, or legal outdoor wood burning appliances, fireplaces, and wood stoves
    • Only seasoned firewood is burned.  Burning wood or yard waste to dispose of it, is considered open burning, not recreational burning, and is regulated by Sac Metro Air District Rule 407 (see section above)
      • Recreational fires are illegal on mandatory curtailment days. For more information about our wintertime restrictions on recreational burning see our webpage Check Before You Burn
    • Contact your local fire department to see if additional requirements apply

Burn Day Status: 

Rules that Apply:

​Agricultural Burning

Agricultural burning pertains to the burning of agricultural waste material. The agricultural material being burned must come from the same agricultural property it was grown on. You must first obtain an agricultural burn permit from the Sacramento County Agricultural Commissioner's Office (link). You must verify it is a legal burn day prior to burning by calling (916) 875-6641.

Burn Day Status: 

      • To check the Agricultural burn day status call (916) 875-6641

Rules that Apply:

​Prescribed Burning

Prescribed burning or controlled burning is conducted by trained personnel to meet specific objectives such as resource management benefits, fire personnel training, or fire hazard reduction. For prescribed burns you must submit a smoke management plan through the California Air Resources Board's Prescribed Fire Information Reporting System (link). Prescribed burns are also required to obtain an agricultural burn permit through the Sacramento County Agricultural Commissioner's Office (see above).

Rules that Apply:

Burn Day Status: 

      • To check the burn day status call (916) 875-6641
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