The disposal of waste by uncontrolled burning is an offence except in the case of burning of Agricultural Green Waste. A burning permit is required.
The disposal of waste by uncontrolled burning is an offence under both the Air Pollution Act, 1987 and the Waste Management Act, 1996 as amended.
However there is one exception to this:
Burning of Agricultural Green Waste
Green waste i.e.uncontaminated wood, trees, tree trimmings, leaves, brush or other similar waste arising from agricultural practices, can be burned once each of the following measures have first been carried out:
- Waste arisings are reduced in accordance with best agricultural practices
- Waste is reused where practicable
- Waste is recycled through shredding and used as a compost or wood chippings where practicable
- Waste is salvaged for use as fuel where practicable.
However, all reasonable measures must be taken to limit:
- the overall nuisance or possibilities for endangering human health or
- causing environmental pollution or damage to adjoining hedgerows or habitats.
Please note that:
- Burning must only take place during that portion of the year when it is legally acceptable to do so (see below)
- You must have applied for and received a burning permit from Meath County Council at least 5 days in advance of the proposed burning (application form below)
When can burning take place?
Please note your obligations under the Wildlife Act 1976 as amended and in particular Section 46(1)(a) which states "It shall be an offence for a person to cut, grub, burn or otherwise destroy, during the period beginning on the 1st day of March and ending on the 31st day of August in any year, any vegetation growing on any land not then cultivated."
Only where the vegetation has been cut prior to the 1st March, is it legal to burn after 1st March, given that it is not growing and is effectively dead.
It should be noted that any cut vegetation may still be a source for birds (making nests) and before burning, landowners should check any such vegetation to ensure there are no nests therein. In addition, landowners would need to comply with Section 39 of the Wildlife Acts which deals with the burning of vegetation near woods etc. Links to Section 39 of the 1976 Act and Section 46 of the 2000 Amendment Act are below for information:
Apply for a burning permit
If you wish to burn green waste arising from agricultural practices, please complete and return the form below, at least 5 days in advance of the proposed burning, to Meath County Council, Environment Section, County Hall, Railway Street, Navan, Co. Meath.