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Burning agricultural wraps and plastics soon to be illegal

11 December 2013

Burning agricultural wraps and plastics soon to be illegal

Canterbury farmers are reminded that after 1 January 2014, they will not be able to burn polyethylene agricultural silage/bale wraps.

However farmers can recycle their used wraps through Plasback, a product stewardship scheme which recovers used farm plastics for recycling. They can be contacted on 0508 338 240.

Under the Natural Resources Regional Plan (NRRP), since 2011, people in Canterbury and around the country, have not been allowed to burn many wastes generated from domestic and business activities including metals, treated wood, other plastics, empty containers and other wraps.

The penalties are $300 for a first offence and up to $1050 for repeat offences. Persistent offenders could be prosecuted.

Untreated wood and green waste can still be burned, but there are restrictions around this about the way they affect air quality and to avoid nuisance caused to other people. Clean air rules apply all year round in residential areas to ensure that outdoor burning doesn’t contribute to poor air quality or cause a nuisance.

Farmers should check with Environment Canterbury and Rural Fire if they are unsure of what they can burn and when.

Best Practice

Environment Canterbury strongly encourages farmers to dispose of agricultural wraps, used containers, unwanted agrichemicals, paints and used oil using accredited product stewardship schemes such as Plasback, Agrecovery, Resene Paintwise and Geocycle or ROSE. This will ensure that all these wastes are dealt with appropriately and that there are no discharges into the environment. Farmers can find out more about these schemes by contacting Environment Canterbury Customer Services on (03) 3653828.

Farmers can have a farm pit without a resource consent, but should check its contents before they burn this.

Prohibited materials for outdoor burning

• Treated wood including chip board, particle board and laminated boards

• Painted, stained or oiled wood

• All plastics including agrichemical containers and agricultural wrap

• Metals and materials containing metals

• Any fuel with a sulphur content greater than 1% by weight

• Materials containing asbestos

• All rubber including tyres

• Synthetic materials including but not limited to foams, fiberglass and chemicals

• Tar or bitumen

• Used or waste oil

• Medical Waste, pathological wastes, quarantine waste or animal waste (except as provided for in Rule AQL32 of the Air Plan)

• Motor vehicle parts

• Paint and other surface coating materials

• Sludge from industrial processes

Conditions around permitted outdoor burning

Smoke and fumes from the fire should not cause an objectionable or offensive effect beyond the boundary of the property where the fire is burning.

The discharge is not within 100 metres upwind, or 50 metres in any other direction, of any sensitive activity not located on the property where burning occurs.

Only small quantities of petroleum products, up to 10 litres per fire, may be used as accelerants.

You can burn vegetation, paper, cardboard and untreated wood from no more than two adjoining properties and the materials being burnt have to come from and be burnt on one of those properties.

Available Recycling Options
Silage and bale wrap (polyethylene wrap), Polypropylene bags, HDPE Drums Recycling and Recovery, Vineyard nets, Polypropylene twines, irrigation pipe For more information and advice contact Plasback Phone 0508 338 240


Agrichemical, animal health and dairy hygiene plasticcontainers (0-60L) – empty and triple rinsed, Agrichemicals, Plastic and steel drums 61-1000 litres For more information and advice contact Agrecovery Phone 0800 247 326


Paint Resene Paintwise http://www.resene.co.nz/paintwise.htm

Waste oil Holcim – Geocycle, or ROSEhttp://www.rosenz.co.nz/CoverageContacts/index.htm

Fulton Hogan 0800 26 36 45
Scrap metal Search the yellow pages for scrap metal dealers Canterbury

Other Disposal Options
Treated or painted timber/wood, asbestos, rubber, medical/pathological wastes, tar/bitumen, motor vehicle parts Contact a licenced waste disposal contractor or check with your local vet for animal medical wastes and sharps.


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