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Outdoor burningTe tahu

Find out what you can and can’t burn on your property.

2024 Winter burning

From 1 May to 31 August, it’s prohibited to burn outdoors on any property within the Napier and Hastings airsheds. 

Find out whether your property is within an airshed

Pollution Hotline

If your property is affected by outdoor burning, call us 0800 108 838. Regional Council compliance officers will respond to any complaints.

Non-compliance may result in enforcement action.

What you can do


checkmark icon 512x512At all times during the year, fires for cooking (barbecues, hangi, umu) can legally be used in urban areas.

You must:

  • Not burn any prohibited items listed on this page
  • Comply with city or district council bylaws, and Fire and Emergency NZ requirements
  • Ensure the fire does not cause nuisance smoke/odour for neighbouring properties. Smoke must not block visibility on nearby roads.

September - April

From September to April, you can only burn the following outdoors:

  • Dry garden rubbish
  • Dry and untreated wood
  • Paper and cardboard.

Before burning, you must:

  • Check with your city or district council to make sure you aren’t breaching their bylaws, AND
  • Check with Fire Emergency NZ regarding fire bans and whether you may need a permit, AND
  • Check you are not burning any of the prohibited items list, AND
  • Make sure that smoke, ash or odour from your fire is not causing a problem beyond your property boundary. Smoke must never affect visibility on nearby roads.

What you can’t do

Icon with a red circle and a red crossIt’s prohibited to burn: 

  • Animal waste 
  • Asbestos or radioactive material 
  • Batteries, pacemakers, or electronic devices 
  • Materials containing bitumen 
  • Chemical or medical waste 
  • Fibreglass or foam products 
  • General industrial rubbish 
  • Insulated electrical cables or recovered metals 
  • Any combination of metals and combustible materials, including coated or covered cables  
  • Peat 
  • Plastic products, including plastic coated metals 
  • Rubber products, including tyres 
  • Synthetic material 
  • Treated, oiled or painted timber, fibreboard or chipboard  
  • Waste oil or any waste containing hydrocarbons 

You must not allow smoke, ash, odours, or gases from any fire to cause a problem beyond your boundary. I.e., smoke blocking visibility on nearby roads, or objectionable or offensive levels of smoke and ash. 

You can’t burn someone else’s waste on your property. The waste must have been generated on your property. 

For a complete list, refer to Rule 20 of the in the Regional Resource Management Plan (Chapter 6 - Regional Rules, page 146).

Find out if your property is in an airshed

Enter your address below.

If your property is in the orange zone, you can’t burn outdoors from 1 May – 31 August.

Find more information about airsheds on our Clean Heating page.

Rural burning

Orange icon showing a rural landscape with a fireFire ban and permit information can be obtained from Fire Emergency NZ.

Be considerate of your neighbours – they can report your fire if it affects them.

Burn only well dried waste vegetation. When it’s green or wet, it burns slowly with much more smoke.

Check the weather before lighting your fire. Light breeze blowing away from neighbours is best.

Avoid lighting a fire on still, winter mornings as smoke can become trapped by the inversion layer and become a health hazard.


Burning on industrial and trade sites 

Orange icon showing an industrial building with a fireThere are specific rules restricting the outdoor burning on trade or industrial sites.  

  • They cannot burn materials outdoors without a resource consent, OR 
  • They cannot burn materials without proper incineration equipment – a purpose-built incinerator or boiler with a chimney and a way of controlling temperature (44-gallon drums are not incinerators), AND 
  • They aren’t burning waste generated on another property, AND 
  • They aren’t burning any of the prohibited items listed on this page, AND 
  • They are complying with city or district council bylaws, and Fire Emergency NZ’s requirements. 


Burning on horticultural production land 

Orange icon showing a field with a fireGrowers may burn outdoors from 1 May – 31 August if there are no other practical or reasonable onsite disposal methods. Burning may only occur for: 

  • Orchard or vineyard redevelopment - where production trees are removed and being replanted. Allowing orchards to go back to pasture or crop planting is not redevelopment. 
  • Disposal of diseased plant material. 

There are strict conditions: 

  • The burning of prunings is not permitted 
  • Fires must be lit in a way to reduce smoke and hazards, AND 
  • None of the prohibited items listed on this page are being burnt, AND 
  • They are complying with city or district council bylaws, and Fire Emergency NZ’s requirements. 

Burning on horticultural production land is not permitted if: 

  • The wind is likely to cause smoke to drift towards the Napier or Hastings airsheds, block visibility on nearby roads, OR 
  • In calm conditions where wind speed at 1m above ground is less than 3 metres per second. 

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