[Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of Buchanan County 1-9-2017. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[In regard to statutory references, unless the County specifically amends the statutory provisions to the contrary or repeals the statutory provisions, future amendments to said statute shall take effect as provided by law.]
The purpose of this chapter is to protect public health, safety, and welfare by regulating open burning within Buchanan County to achieve and maintain, to the greatest extent practicable, a level of air quality that will provide comfort and convenience while promoting economic and social development. This chapter is intended to supplement the applicable regulations promulgated by the State Air Pollution Control Board and other applicable regulations and laws.
For the purpose of this chapter and subsequent amendments or any orders issued by Buchanan County, the words or phrases shall have the meaning given them in this section.
- AGRICULTURE WASTE
- Solid waste contaminated with animal feces and urine.
- AUTOMOBILE GRAVEYARD
- Any lot or place that is exposed to the weather and upon which more than five motor vehicles of any kind, incapable of being operated, and that it would not be economically practical to make operative, are placed, located or found.
- BUILT-UP AREA
- Any area with a substantial portion covered by industrial, commercial or residential buildings.
- CLEAN BURNING WASTE
- Waste that is not prohibited to be burned under this chapter and that consists only of:
- CLEAN LUMBER
- Wood or wood products that have been cut or shaped and include wet, air-dried, and kiln-dried wood products. Clean lumber does not include wood products that have been painted, pigment-stained, or pressure-treated by compounds such as chromate copper arsenate, pentachlorophenol, and creosote.
- CLEAN WOOD
- Uncontaminated natural or untreated wood. Clean wood includes, but is not limited to, by-products of harvesting activities conducted for forest management or commercial logging, or mill residues consisting of bark, chips, edgings, sawdust, shavings or slabs. It does not include wood that has been treated, adulterated, or chemically changed in some way; treated with glues, binders or resins; or painted, stained or coated.
- CONSTRUCTION WASTE
- Solid waste that is produced or generated during construction remodeling, or repair of pavements, houses, commercial buildings and other structures. Construction waste consists of lumber, wire, Sheetrock, broken brick, shingles, glass, pipes, concrete, and metal and plastics if the metal or plastics are a part of the materials of construction or empty containers for such materials. Paints, coatings, solvents, asbestos, any liquid, compressed gases or semi-liquids, and garbage are not construction wastes, and the disposal of such materials must be in accordance with the regulations of the Virginia Waste Management Board.
- DEBRIS WASTE
- Wastes resulting from land-clearing operations. Debris wastes include but are not limited to stumps, wood, brush, leaves, soil and road spoils.
- DEMOLITION WASTE
- That solid waste which is produced by the destruction of structures, or their foundations, or both, and includes the same materials as construction waste.
- Readily putrescible discarded materials composed of animal, vegetable or other organic matter.
- HAZARDOUS WASTE
- A "hazardous waste" as described in 9 VAC 20-60, Hazardous Waste Management Regulations.
- HOUSEHOLD WASTE
- Any waste material, including garbage, trash and refuse, derived from households. For purposes of this regulation, households include single and multiple residences, hotels and motels, bunkhouses, ranger stations, crew quarters, campgrounds, picnic grounds and day-use recreation areas. Household wastes do not include sanitary waste in septic tanks (septage) which is regulated by state agencies.
- INDUSTRIAL WASTE
- Any solid waste generated by manufacturing or industrial processes that is not a regulated hazardous waste. Such waste may include but is not limited to waste resulting from the following manufacturing processes: electric power generation; fertilizer/agricultural chemicals; food and related products/by-products; inorganic chemicals; iron and steel manufacturing; leather and leather products; nonferrous metals manufacturing/foundries; organic chemicals; plastics and resins manufacturing; pulp and paper industry; rubber and miscellaneous plastic products; stone, glass, clay and concrete products; textile manufacturing; transportation equipment; and water treatment. This term does not include mining waste or oil and gas waste.
- An establishment or place of business that is maintained, operated, or used for storing, keeping, buying, or selling junk, or for the maintenance or operation of an automobile graveyard, and the term shall include garbage dumps and sanitary landfills.
- A sanitary landfill, an industrial waste landfill, or a construction/demolition/debris landfill. See Solid Waste Management Regulations (9 VAC 20-80) for further definitions of these terms.
- LOCAL LANDFILL
- Any landfill located within the jurisdiction of a local government.
- OPEN BURNING
- The combustion of solid waste without:
- OPEN PIT INCINERATOR
- A device used to burn waste for the primary purpose of reducing the volume by removing combustible matter. Such devices function by directing a curtain of air at an angle across the top of a trench or similarly enclosed space, thus reducing the amount of combustion by-products emitted into the atmosphere. The term also includes trench burners, air curtain incinerators and overdraft incinerators.
- All solid waste products having the characteristics of solids rather than liquids and which are composed wholly or partially of materials such as garbage, trash, rubbish, litter, residues from cleanup of spills or contamination or other discarded materials.
- SALVAGE OPERATION
- Any operation consisting of a business, trade or industry participating in salvaging or reclaiming any product or material, such as, but not limited to, reprocessing of used motor oils, metals, chemicals, shipping containers or drums, and specifically including automobile graveyards and junkyards.
- SANITARY LANDFILL
- An engineered land burial facility for the disposal of household waste that is so located, designed, constructed, and operated to contain and isolate the waste so that it does not pose a substantial present or potential hazard to human health or the environment. A sanitary landfill also may receive other types of solid wastes, such as commercial solid waste, nonhazardous sludge, hazardous waste from conditionally exempt small quantity generators, construction, demolition, or debris waste and nonhazardous industrial solid waste. See Solid Waste Management Regulations (9 VAC 20-80) for further definitions of these terms.
- Small gas-borne particulate matter consisting mostly, but not exclusively, of carbon, ash and other material in concentrations sufficient to form a visible plume.
- SPECIAL INCINERATION DEVICE
- An open pit incinerator, conical or teepee burner, or any other device specifically designed to provide good combustion performance.
- WOOD WASTE
- Untreated wood and untreated wood products, including tree stumps (whole or chipped), trees, tree limbs (whole or chipped), bark, sawdust, chips, scraps, slabs, millings, and shavings. Wood waste does not include:
- YARD WASTE
- Grass, grass clippings, bushes, shrubs, and clippings from bushes and shrubs that come from residential, commercial/retail, institutional, or industrial sources as part of maintaining yards or other private or public lands. Yard waste does not include construction, renovation, and demolition wastes or clean wood.
No owner or other person shall cause or permit open burning or the use of a special incineration device for the destruction of refuse except as provided in this chapter.
No owner or other person shall cause or permit open burning or the use of a special incineration device for the destruction of rubber tires, asphaltic materials, crankcase oil, impregnated wood or other rubber or petroleum based materials except when conducting bona fide firefighting instruction at firefighting training schools having permanent facilities.
No owner or other person shall cause or permit open burning or the use of a special incineration device for the destruction of hazardous waste or containers for such materials.
No owner or other person shall cause or permit open burning or the use of a special incineration device for the purpose of a salvage operation or for the destruction of commercial/industrial waste/agriculture waste.
Open burning or the use of special incineration devices permitted under the provisions of this chapter does not exempt or excuse any owner or other person from the consequences, liability, damages or injuries that may result from such conduct; nor does it excuse or exempt any owner or other person from complying with other applicable laws, ordinances, regulations and orders of the governmental entities having jurisdiction, even though the open burning is conducted in compliance with this chapter. In this regard special attention should be directed to § 10.1-1142 of the Forest Fire Law of Virginia, the regulations of the Virginia Waste Management Board, and the State Air Pollution Control Board's regulations for the control and abatement of air pollution.
Upon declaration of an alert, warning or emergency stage of an air pollution episode as described in 9 VAC 5, Chapter 70 (9 VAC 5-70), or when deemed advisable by the State Air Pollution Control Board to prevent a hazard to, or an unreasonable burden upon, public health or welfare, no owner or other person shall cause or permit open burning or use of a special incineration device; and any in-process burning or use of special incineration devices shall be immediately terminated in the designated air quality control region.
The following activities are exempted to the extent covered by the State Air Pollution Control Board's regulations for the control and abatement of air pollution:
Open burning for training and instruction of government and public firefighters under the supervision of the designated official and industrial in-house firefighting personnel;
Open burning for campfires or other fires that are used solely for recreational purposes, for ceremonial occasions, for outdoor noncommercial preparation of food, and for warming of outdoor workers;
Open burning for the destruction of any combustible liquid or gaseous material by burning in a flare or flare stack;
Open burning for forest management and agriculture practices approved by the State Air Pollution Control Board; and
Open burning for the destruction of classified military documents.
Open burning is permitted on site for the destruction of leaves and tree, yard and garden trimmings located on the premises of private property, provided that the following conditions are met:
Open burning is permitted on site for destruction of debris waste resulting from property maintenance, from the development or modification of roads and highways, parking areas, railroad tracks, pipelines, power and communication lines, buildings or building areas, sanitary landfills, or from any other clearing operations that may be approved by Buchanan County Litter Control Official, provided the following conditions are met:
All reasonable effort shall be made to minimize the amount of material burned, with the number and size of the debris piles approved by Buchanan County Litter Control Official;
The material to be burned shall consist of brush, stumps and similar debris waste and shall not include demolition material;
The burning shall be at least 500 feet from any occupied building unless the occupants have given prior permission, other than a building located on the property on which the burning is conducted;
The burning shall be conducted at the greatest distance practicable from highways and air fields;
The burning shall be attended at all times and conducted to ensure the best possible combustion with a minimum of smoke being produced;
The burning shall not be allowed to smolder beyond the minimum period of time necessary for the destruction of the materials; and
The burning shall be conducted only when the prevailing winds are away from any city, town or built-up area.
Open burning is permitted for destruction of debris on the site of local landfills or transfer stations provided that the burning does not take place on land that has been filled and covered so as to present an underground fire hazard due to the presence of methane gas, provided that the following conditions are met:
The burning shall take place on the premises of a local sanitary landfill or transfer station that meets the provisions of the regulations of the Virginia Waste Management Board;
The burning shall be attended at all times;
The material to be burned shall consist only of brush, tree trimmings, yard and garden trimmings, clean burning waste, clean burning debris waste, or clean burning demolition waste;
All reasonable effort shall be made to minimize the amount of material that is burned;
No materials may be burned in violation of the regulations of the Virginia Waste Management Board or the State Air Pollution Control Board. The exact site of the burning on a local landfill or transfer station shall be established in coordination with the regional director and Buchanan County Litter Control Official: no other site shall be used without the approval of these officials. The Buchanan County Litter Control Official shall be notified of the days during which the burning will occur.
When open burning of debris waste or open burning of debris on the site of a local landfill is to occur within Buchanan County, the person responsible for the burning shall obtain a permit from the Buchanan County Litter Control Official prior to the burning. Such a permit may be granted only after confirmation by Buchanan County Litter Control Official that the burning can and will comply with the provisions of this chapter and any other conditions that are deemed necessary to ensure that the burning will not endanger the public health and welfare or to ensure compliance with any applicable provisions of the State Air Pollution Control Board's regulations for the control and abatement of air pollution. The permit may be issued for each occasion of burning or for a specific period of time deemed appropriate by Buchanan County Litter Control Official.
Prior to the initial installation (or reinstallation, in cases of relocation) and operation of special incineration devices, the person responsible for the burning shall obtain a permit from the Buchanan County Litter Control Official, such permits to be granted only after confirmation by Buchanan County Litter Control Official that the burning can and will comply with the applicable provisions in regulations for the control and abatement of air pollution and that any conditions are met that are deemed necessary by the Buchanan County Litter Control Official to ensure that the operation of the devices will not endanger the public health and welfare. Permits granted for the use of special incineration devices shall at a minimum contain the following conditions:
All reasonable effort shall be made to minimize the amount of material that is burned. Such efforts shall include, but are not limited to, the removal of pulpwood, saw logs and firewood.
The material to be burned shall consist of brush, stumps and similar debris waste and shall not include demolition material.
The burning shall be at least 300 feet from any occupied building unless the occupants have given prior permission, other than a building located on the property on which the burning is conducted; burning shall be conducted at the greatest distance practicable from highways and air fields. If the Buchanan County Litter Control Official determines that it is necessary to protect public health and welfare, he may direct that any of the above-cited distances be increased.
The burning shall be attended at all times and conducted to ensure the best possible combustion with a minimum of smoke being produced. Under no circumstances should the burning be allowed to smolder beyond the minimum period of time necessary for the destruction of the materials.
The burning shall be conducted only when the prevailing winds are away from any city, town or built-up area.
The use of special incineration devices shall be allowed only for the destruction of debris waste, clean burning construction waste, and clean burning demolition waste.
Permits issued under this subsection shall be limited to a specific period of time deemed appropriate by the Buchanan County Litter Control Official.