Back burner for backyard burning issue
By Timothy Schafer, The Nelson Daily
The smoke still hasn’t cleared on the issue of temporary backyard burning as city council will look towards a September staff report to douse or fan the flames on the issue.
Council decided Monday at their regular council meeting to table the decision on allowing the burning to continue during the month of November.
There was some division on council about what would be involved in the burning permits, or if it would be easier for people to haul away their yard waste.
“We will still be asking people to take their yard waste down to the transfer station for composting,” said City manager Kevin Cormack.
In April of 2009 city council chose not to allow burning that fall, but the City’s fire chief was asked to review the issue to allow a period of burning for the fall of 2010.
Under the Fire Regulation and Prevention Bylaw, a yard waste burning period is allowed to be instituted by city council.
Nelson Fire Rescue chief Simon Grypma said the Community Fire Smart Outreach program said a majority of the people surveyed were in favour of some form of backyard burning.
He said during the Wild Land Fuel Modification program there was community wide support for removal, chipping and burning of woody debris.
Although the Ministry of the Environment has stated the city has a relatively poor air quality index — and allowing people to burn yard waste could add to the problem — backyard burning is permitted all year in outlying areas.
Coun. Bob Adams had stated that burning the waste, similar to the slash piles and prescribed burns used to manage forests, would reduce the threat of a wildfire in the city, similar to the reasoning behind the burns in the forest.