Burning and Air Quality


Smoke pollution from open burning can seriously impact your health, as well as the health and well-being of your neighbours, your family, and your kids. The CVRD and partners have set up a network or air quality sensors for residents to check out real-time air pollution levels in the Cowichan region.

To improve local air quality in the Cowichan Region, the CVRD has two bylaws which regulate backyard burning and land-clearing debris burning. Make sure that you know the rules before you burn! There are many alternatives to open burning, the CVRD offers free yard and garden waste drop-off at local Recycling Centres.

If you heat your home with a woodstove, you may also be eligible for the 2018 Woodstove Replacement Program.

Backyard Burning

Smoke Pollution and Your Health

Scientific evidence indicates a strong link between air pollution levels and impacts on human health. Burning yard waste in your backyard, or improperly using a woodstove for home heating, spread invisible, toxic chemicals throughout the region. These chemicals include dioxins, furans, arsenic, mercury, PCBs, lead, carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, sulphur oxides, hydrochloric acid, and fine particular matter (PM2.5).