Ozone Season Began May 1

Outdoor Burning Restricted in Some Counties

FRANKFORT, Ky. (May 2, 2022) – Ozone season began May 1 and for some Kentucky counties that means taking extra care to learn before you burn. From May 1 through September 30, open burning in Boone, Boyd, Bullitt, Campbell, Jefferson, Kenton, Lawrence, and Oldham counties is restricted to protect air quality.

Ground-level ozone is a summertime health risk, created when pollutants chemically react in the atmosphere in the presence of heat and sunlight.

“Pollution from open burning is more likely to cause problems during the warmer months of the year,” said Michael Kennedy, director of the Division for Air Quality. “For those counties that have historically had problems meeting air quality standards for ozone and particulate pollution, most open burning is restricted during this time to protect air quality and human health.”

From May through September, the open burning of household rubbish, brush, tree limbs, leaves and natural growth from land clearing are not permitted in Boone, Boyd, Bullitt, Campbell, Kenton, and Oldham counties. A portion of Lawrence County is subject to open burning restrictions during ozone season.  Open burning is restricted year-round in Jefferson County.

All of these counties have, at one time or another, been designated ‘non-attainment’ for ozone or particulate matter pollutants.

Many people may not realize that burning trash – at any time of the year – is illegal in all Kentucky counties. State law prohibits the burning of many materials including plastic, tires, cans, coated wire, carpeting and food waste. In addition, the burning of trailers, buildings, and construction and demolition debris such as shingles, drywall and insulation is prohibited. 

Painted, stained or treated wood products such as fence posts, pallets, and furniture are illegal to burn, because they release dangerous toxins into the air. Items that cannot be recycled should be taken to a state-permitted landfill.

To report illegal open burning or to learn more about open burning restrictions in your area, please call the Division for Air Quality at 502-782-6592 or email burnlaw@ky.gov , or visit the division’s website at http://bit.ly/OpenBurningKY .


Air quality education offered in Carlisle, Jamestown

“Learn before you burn” and “Why care about air?” classes offered

How do you teach about something you can’t see, taste, or feel?  Teachers and non-formal educators can explore air quality education in a day-long workshop titled, “Why Care about Air?”, on Friday, July 24 at Wolf Creek National Fish Hatchery in Jamestown, Kentucky.

Credit: Virginia Lewis
Credit: Virginia Lewis

Led by Roberta Burnes and Kentucky Environmental Education Council Executive Director Elizabeth Schmitz, the workshop will explore air quality through hands-on, standards-based activities.  Whether you are a classroom teacher, 4-H or Scout leader, or homeschool parent, this workshop will provide you with lessons and resources that will make air quality come alive for your students.

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