Did You Know You Can’t Burn These Garbage Items In Iowa?
Last week there were burn bans in pretty much the entire state of Iowa. The combination of lack of moisture and wind gusts made any kind of burning prohibited without the proper permit. Failing to comply with a burn ban could result in a simple misdemeanor. There are instances during a burn ban in which you are allowed to burn things.
According to Iowa State Fire Marshal, a burn ban "shall not prohibit a supervised, controlled burn for which a permit has been issued by the fire chief of the fire district where the burn will take place, the use of outdoor fireplaces, barbecue grills, properly supervised landfills, or the burning of trash in incinerators or trash burners made of metal, concrete, masonry, or heavy one-inch wire mesh, with no openings greater than one square inch."
Something a little more common in rural areas in the state of Iowa are people who burn their garbage. If you live in a more heavily populated area, you probably won't see this as much but I'm sure there are Iowans who do this. The Iowa DNR refers to this process as "backyard burning." Did you know these items are prohibited from being burned in your backyard?
Prohibited Items From Backyard Burning
Burning common household trash and/or garbage does emit a certain amount of poison and toxins into the environment. According to the Iowa DNR, the state prohibits the burning of any item that could be recycled. This seems reasonable, what about items that can't be recycled?
Other common household items, that would be considered trash, and you aren't allowed to burn are; synthetics, plastics, and packaging. These items release potent chemicals if they are burned.
I was surprised to learn that there are even common paper products that are prohibited from burning. Products like "junk mail, cardboard, newsprint, and magazines contain "contain chemical dyes, coatings, pigments, and chlorine," according to Iowa DNR.
The Iowa DNR reports residential trash burning is now the nation's largest source of dioxin emissions and that Iowans can keep poison out of our air, food, water, and soil by finding cleaner waste disposal options. Alternatives to burning are requested.