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Burning off

Some Knox residents can burn off in the open air with a valid Permit to Burn. You are only able to burn off at certain times of the year.

Penalties apply to Knox residents burning off without a valid Permit.

Knox City Council determines who can burn off on a case-by-case basis.

Permit to Burn

A Permit to Burn helps you burn off in a way that is safe and responsible. It reduces fire hazard and prepares your property before the Fire Danger Period.

If you own, rent, or live in a property in the Bushfire Management Overlay (BMO) you may be eligible for a Permit to Burn. The BMO is a planning control applied to land at risk from bushfires.

Outside of the BMO, there is a permit fee of $70 (non-refundable if the permit is refused).

Even with a Permit to Burn, you cannot burn off:

  • on Total Fire Ban days
  • during the Fire Danger Period
  • in June or July.

Apply for a Permit to Burn

Before you apply

Permits will expire on the Declaration of the Fire Danger Period.

Be aware that:

Prepare for burning off

Council’s Municipal Fire Prevention Officers may inspect your property to make sure the burn off will be safe.

You will need to have:

  • your burn piles in a cleared location
  • everything ready for inspection
  • an ample water supply.

Burn offs without a valid permit may receive a fine. An infringement notice for burning off without a permit is $500.

When you can burn off

There is a ban on all open-air fires during Total Fire Ban days.

We suspend permits for the duration of any Total Fire Ban days and during the Fire Danger Period.

You must also:

  • have a valid Permit to Burn
  • follow the permit conditions
  • notify your neighbours at least two hours beforehand
  • have a 3-metre clear area around the fire
  • attend the fire at all times
  • have means to put out the fire
  • make sure the fire is completely out before leaving.

Burning off alternatives

Make sure you have disposed of what you can through other channels before considering burning off. This reduces fire fuel. 

You could:

  • use your green bin
  • use your hard and bundled green waste collection
  • compost or mulch dead leaves, small branches and sticks
  • take items to the Knox Transfer and Recycling Station.

Using fire for cooking or warmth

You do not need a Permit to Burn to use a barbeque to cook food for human consumption. You can also use a brazier, chiminea or small receptacle built for containing fire for the purposes of heating. 

You must ensure that there is no nuisance caused by the emission of:

  • smoke
  • soot
  • ash
  • odours.

Incinerators

An owner or occupier of land must not construct, erect, install, use or permit to be used an incinerator on any land.

Need help?

Contact us and we will get back to you.

Or call our Local Laws team on 9298 8000.

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