Burning Activities

The department regulates all open outdoor fires. The purpose of this program is to limit the emissions of air contaminants that are produced from open burning. Below contains a partial list of the kinds of burning activities, whether they require permits and the restrictions on them. Some restrictions apply throughout Maricopa County, and some apply only in Area A. For an interactive map of Area A, see Planning Area Maps.

To determine high pollution advisory days you can sign up for email or text alerts, download the Clean Air Make More Mobile App, or call the burn restrictions update line at 602-506-6400 to find out if burn restrictions are in place.


Household Waste and Yard Waste

Burning household waste creates dangerous air pollution and is strictly prohibited. Burning yard waste (such as tree trimmings) is also prohibited. Contact your local waste disposal service to find out how to dispose of yard waste in your area, or create a compost pile for your yard waste.

Indoor Fireplaces in Commercial or Institutional Establishments

Burning in indoor fireplaces that use anything other than gaseous fuels (including gas logs) is prohibited during restricted-burn periods.

Fires for Testing Potentially Explosive Containing Products

Special restrictions and record-keeping requirements apply. See Rule 314 § 303.4, or call the department for more details.

Air Curtain Destructors

Open outdoor fires in an air curtain destructor require a Title V permit from the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) and a burn plan approved by Maricopa County Air Quality. Call the department for more details.


Open Outdoor Fires that Require a Burn Permit

*No type of fire is allowed during burn restriction periods.

Fires for the following purposes are not allowed from May 1 through September 30 in Area A:

  • Destruction of tumbleweeds
  • Clearing scrub vegetation

Fires for the following purposes are allowed from May 1 through September 30 in Area A:

  • Agricultural disease or pest prevention
  • Weed control for prevention of fire hazards
  • Fire fighting training
  • Clearing agricultural ditch banks or fence rows
  • Watershed rehabilitation


Open Outdoor Fires that Do Not Require a Burn Permit

*No type of fire is allowed during burn restriction periods, and although these types of fires do not require a burn permit, they do require notification to the air quality department and may require notification to your local fire department.

Allowed all year in all areas (restrictions apply—see Rule 314 for more details):

  • Fire extinguisher training
  • Fire fighting training (if the sole source of flame is liquefied natural gas (LNG) or natural gas, and the input rating per hour is less than 2,000,000 BTU)
  • Disposal of dangerous material (must comply with ADEQ regulations)

Fires for the following purposes are not allowed from May 1 - September 30 in Area A:

  • Warmth for human beings
  • Recreational purposes
  • Wood-burning chimeneas and outdoor pits
  • Branding of animals


Open Outdoor Fires that Do Not Require a Burn Permit and Are Allowed During a Burn Restriction Period

Allowed all year in all areas:

  • Cooking for immediate human consumption
  • Orchard heaters for frost protection in farming or nursery operations
  • Proper disposal of flags under 4 U.S.C. § 8
  • Display of fireworks for recreational purposes or pyrotechnics for musical, cinematic or theatrical functions (but check with your local fire department to determine if there are local restrictions)
Page reviewed 04 June 2018