Good air quality is important for the health and wellbeing of residents and visitors to Eurobodalla Shire. Council works with government, industry and our community to protect air quality and to reduce exposure to air pollution.
Air quality is affected by pollutants emitted into our atmosphere and indoor environments. There are a number of causes and events that contribute to our air quality such as:
- motor vehicle emissions
- burning of vegetation and rubbish in open fires
- smoke from wood fire heaters
- natural events such as bush fire and dust storms.
Air pollution affects everyone differently depending on health status, exposure to pollutants and levels of pollution.
Smoke from solid fuel heaters is one of the most common causes of air pollution in Eurobodalla Shire.
Solid fuel burning in the home provides an effective economical and attractive method of heating. However, the installation of solid fuel heating devices has the potential to create significant problems with respect to fire hazard, environmental pollution and nuisance to adjoining properties.
Pollutants in wood smoke include:
- noxious gases such as carbon monoxide
- organic compounds, including air toxins
- fine particles formed when unburnt gases cool as they travel up the chimney; in the air, these can be seen as white smoke.
Wood heater compliance
Approval from Council is needed prior to the installation of all solid fuel heaters, which are to be installed in accordance with the relevant Australian Standards and the Building Code of Australia. This approval is required under Section 68 of the Local Government Act 1993.
You can check whether your heater complies with the relevant Standards on NSW EPA's website. You can also read information about selecting, installing and operating domestic solid fuel heaters:
Find out about the application process for a solid fuel heater. You can apply for the installation of your heater by completing the application and lodging with your supporting documents on the NSW Planning Portal:
Backyard burning generally refers to the burning of rubbish, leaf litter and other vegetation at a residential premises.
The Protection of the Environment Operations (Clean Air) Regulation 2022 (the Regulation) provides regulatory measures for different air quality issues.These issues include residential emissions such as woodsmoke and backyard burning, and emissions associated with motor vehicles and industrial emissions.
What Council is doing about air quality issues
Council is responsible for the management of certain local air quality issues and has the power to take action under the Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 in accordance with the Protection of the Environment Operations (Clean Air) Regulation 2022.
Council also shares responsibility of air emissions with other government bodies, and only has jurisdiction to act on specific air pollution issues.
Council has implemented a Clean Air Policy, which aims to protect the environment, health and amenity of residents and visitors in Eurobodalla Shire. It also ensures compliance with the Regulation:
Contacts for air pollution
Should you have a problem with air emissions, always attempt to discuss the issue directly with the person responsible for the nuisance in order to try and achieve a solution. Agree on a definite timeframe to do something about the problem. If the situation has not changed after that time, it may then be necessary to contact the appropriate authority:
- NSW EPA: Reducing wood smoke emissions
- NSW EPA: Local government air quality toolkit
- NSW EPA: Air
- NSW EPA: About air pollution
- Eurobodalla Council: Common questions about backyard burning
We can help you
If you need more information about air quality, please contact our Public and Environmental Health Team:
- T: 02 4474 1310
- E: Council's Public and Environmental Health Team