Environment Protection (Air Quality) Policy 2016
The new Environment Protection (Air Quality) Policy 2016 (Air Quality EPP) has come into effect to better protect and improve the health of South Australians, their communities and the environment.
The policy reduces the impact of smoke and other air pollutants on communities across the state.
The new policy reflects current understanding of health impacts from air pollution, with the regulation and management of air quality now in line with contemporary practices.
This has not changed any previous practices for prescribed fuel reduction burning.
The key changes to the Air Quality Policy include:
- The EPA taking a ‘whole-of-air-shed’ approach to managing air quality in South Australia
- Regulating the sale and installation of wood heaters, and the sale of firewood
- Streamlining council management of burning in the open through regulation, while ensuring the ability to burn off for bushfire prevention is maintained
- Greater consideration of risk to health and the environment when setting stack emission limits.
The new policy does not require permits for burning-off outside of metropolitan Adelaide and outside of townships beyond metropolitan Adelaide, however burning-off will need to comply with CFS codes of practice to reduce the risk of bushfire.
Further, all necessary burning-off in townships and metropolitan Adelaide will be permitted by general notice or permit, at the discretion of each council.
EPA Operations Director Science, Assessment and Planning, Peter Dolan said that red tape will be reduced for fringe metropolitan councils which under the old policy required permits for every burn undertaken in their rural areas.
“The policy does not apply where a permit has been obtained under the Fire and Emergency Services Act 2005 (CFS permits) or where that Act requires or authorises any fuel reduction burning to occur,” he said.
More details on the Air Quality Policy 2016 are contained in the Public Consultation Report available through the EPA website.