Who Needs a Burn Permit, Who Does Not

Local regulations vary, please check before lighting your fire.

The burning of logs, stumps, trees, and brush is not allowed within 1,400 feet of a city or village under DEQ air quality rules. In general, state law allows burning of leaves and grass clippings in municipalities of under 7,500 people, but not in communities of greater population. However, local ordinances may prohibit burning in smaller communities, and larger communities may opt to allow burning leaves and grass clippings through local ordinances. So, be sure to check with your local community to find out what the rules are where you will be burning. Department of Environmental Quality air quality rules.

Burn permits are issued only for:

  • Limbs
  • Brush
  • Stumps
  • Evergreen needles
  • Leaves
  • Grass

Ongoing burns for construction and land clearing, roadway maintenance, and uncertified parties performing prescribed burns without a written plan require a burn permit issued by the local DNR Fire Manager.

Burn permits are NOT required:

  • Cooking or recreational campfires
  • Anytime there is continuous snow cover adjacent to your fire
  • Household paper materials that does not contain plastic, rubber, foam, or textiles that is burned in a container constructed of metal or masonry, with a covering device having openings no larger than 3/4 of an inch

Items that can never be burned due to air quality regulations:

  • Demolition debris
  • Construction materials
  • Automotive parts
  • Household trash that contains plastic, rubber, foam, chemically treated wood, textiles, electronics, chemicals or hazardous materials