Wingecarribee Shire Council is reminding residents of the new changes to its Urban Backyard Burning Policy which came into effect on 1 April 2018.
The changes were adopted by Council in July last year following feedback from residents after extensive public consultation and the introduction of Council’s Green Waste bin.
“Council deliberately held off introducing the changes until after the conclusion of this year’s bushfire danger period,” said Council’s Manager of Environment and Sustainability, Barry Arthur.
“We did this to give those affected more time to adjust to the changes now that the cooler weather is approaching,” he said.
“We’re also asking people planning a backyard burn to be careful and take steps to minimise the chance of the burn getting out of control and escaping.
“This is a very real concern in regional areas like ours particularly after periods with little rain.”
Mr Arthur said the most significant changes involved the changes to the locations that the Policy now covers.
“The biggest change is that only properties larger than 4000 square metres, which is the old one acre, across all of the Shire’s towns and villages can now undertake backyard burning of dry vegetation as long as certain conditions are met,” he said.
Other requirements detailed within the policy include ensuring the burn meets Rural Fire Service (RFS) Standards for Pile Burning, giving 24 hours notice to neighbours, only burning dead and dry vegetation and obtaining appropriate permits from the RFS or Fire and Rescue NSW during bush fire danger periods. A responsible person should also always remain with the fire and have resources at hand to put the fire out if required.
“The best option for residents living on smaller properties wishing to dispose of green waste is to use their Council supplied green waste bins,” Mr Arthur said. “Prunings, leaves and branches can all be disposed of in these bins.”
The flowers and seeds of environmental weeds, including agapanthus, should continue to be bagged and disposed of in the domestic red bin.
“Some properties may even find a second green waste bin to be beneficial,” Mr Arthur added.
Interested residents should contact Council on phone 4868 0888 or visit Council’s Moss Vale Civic Centre to make arrangements for an additional green waste bin.
The policy does not apply to the use of barbeques, camp cookers or wood heaters.
For a full list of the new conditions including an interactive property map, visit www.wsc.nsw.gov.au/backyard-burning.