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Open burning is the burning of materials in a manner that releases smoke and other emissions directly into the air without passing through a chimney or smokestack from an enclosed chamber. Pollution from open burning is a serious concern because it can harm human health and the environment.

Indiana’s open burning laws and rules make it illegal to burn trash and generally prohibit open burning in Indiana, except for exempt burning activities. Where exemptions apply, you must follow requirements and conditions in state rules and local ordinances. Open burning for fire training, disaster debris management, land clearing, and prescribed burns require IDEM’s prior approval.

Printable information is available for download describing what materials may or may not be open burned by businesses, agricultural, and residential sectors:

Even where it is allowed by state and local regulations, open burning is not advised. Fortunately, there are safer and environmentally friendly alternatives. IDEM enforces Indiana’s open burning rules and works in partnership with local law enforcement, fire departments, and public officials to educate the public and resolve complaints.

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