Ministry of Environment

Proposed Changes to the Open Burning Smoke Control Regulation

The Province is reviewing and revising the Open Burning Smoke Control Regulation (OBSCR) under the Environmental Management Act (EMA). The review process supports the Province's commitment to continuous improvement and the regular review and revision of provisions as appropriate.

The OBSCR governs the burning of vegetative material associated with a range of activities, including land clearing and forestry. It sets out the conditions under which the open burning of vegetative debris can be authorized. This regulation has not been substantively revised since enacted in 1993. A revised regulation will support the Province's objectives of reducing impacts to human health, enabling and encouraging compliance, and minimizing undue costs to industry.

Based on feedback from the two policy intentions paper and the results from industry and other stakeholder consultation, significant improvements to the policy direction have been made.  An information update describing the proposed approach is now posted and available for public comment until July 21, 2016.

Open Burning Smoke Control Regulation: Information Update–Policy Intentions (PDF) NEW!

Instructions for providing comment are in the update. Following careful review of all comments, suggestions and submissions received through the consultation process, government staff will complete legal drafting of the amendment for legislative review and implementation. Please note that a draft map of the proposed sensitivity zones will be made available prior to legislative review of the amendments.

For more information about the OBSCR see:

Public Consultation Process

The Province previously consulted on the OBSCR with an intentions paper released in 2008.

A second Intentions paper was released in 2010.

Finally an information update was released in 2011.

For more information on the consultation process and the development of policy intentions papers see: