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Open Burning

Smoke management is the use of techniques such as meteorology, fuel moisture, fuel loading, fire suppression and other burn methods to minimize the smoke impacts from fires. Accordingly, the purpose of the MBARD's Smoke Management Program

is to minimize the air quality impacts of open burning.

Backyard burning is the burning of green waste material by occupants of single- or two-family dwellings.

Backyard burn season is December 1 through April 30.

The Backyard Burn Permit System will be available at the end of November.

 Agricultural burning is used in the growing of crops, the raising of fowl, animals, or bees as a gainful occupation.

Attention:  CAL FIRE has prohibited agricultural and range improvement burning in State Responsibility Areas in Monterey and San Benito counties! 

CAL FIRE Press Release for Burn Suspension in Monterey and San Benito Counties

 Apply here for an Agricultural Burn Permit in Santa Cruz County Only.

Prescribed burning is the use of broadcast or pile burns for the purposes of managing wildlands, range improvement, or improving wildlife habitat.

Apply here for a Prescribed Burn Permit.

Development burns are for disposing of dry vegetation grown on a property being developed for commercial or residential purposes. Please contact the MBARD office to apply for a Development Burn Permit.

Applicable Rules and Regulations:

Rule 438Title 17: Smoke Management Guidelines for Agricultural and Prescribed Burning

Burn Type Information

What are the Different Types of Burns?Trash Burning BanWarming Fire Guidelines

Health Effects of Smoke

How Smoke Can Affect Your HealthVisibility and Particle Concentration


For more information please contact: