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Air Quality Program

Burn Barrel Information A photograph of a badly smoking rusty burn barrel, that are illegal to use in Washington.

Burn barrels are unhealthy and illegal. You could be fined if you choose to burn in a burn barrel. Burning common household trash in a burn barrel, incinerator or open fire produces a black, foul-smelling smoke that irritates the eyes, nose and throat.  Burning trash in open fires or household incinerators creates low temperature fires which release toxic substances from plastics, inks, foils and other packaging materials into the air. 

The focus sheet " Burn Barrels: A Burning Health Problem " lists some materials that are illegal to burn.

"Open burning of household waste in barrels is potentially one of the largest sources of airborne dioxin and furan emissions in the United States"- US EPA

Burn Barrel TV ad. (WMV File)

You burn it, you breathe it! News Release 

Newspaper Ads (PDF format)

Public Service Announcements (PDF format)

Scientific Reports

EPA Technical Report (PDF format)-- Evaluation of Emissions from the Open Burning of Household Waste in Barrels

Emissions of Polychlorinated Dibenzo-p-dioxins and Polychlorinated Dibenzofurans from the Open Burning of Household Waste in Barrels

Links for additional information on burn barrels

Other Burning Links

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