The Environment Act 1995 requires Local Authorities to undertake air quality reviews. In areas where an air quality objective is not anticipated to be met, Local Authorities are required to establish Air Quality Management Areas and implement action plans to improve air quality. Aberdeenshire Council published an Updating and Screening Assessment in July 2003. The conclusions of this assessment indicated that the authority did not need to undertake detailed assessments for any pollutant.
Legislation requires that Annual Air Quality Progress Reports are produced between subsequent rounds of review and assessment. Aberdeenshire Council published the first of these annual reports Local Air Quality Management – Progress Report 2004 in May 2004.
Burning garden waste produces smoke, especially if it is damp and smouldering. This will contain pollutants including carbon monoxide, dioxins and particles. It is a common misconception that there are specific byelaws that prohibit garden bonfires or specify times they can be lit – there aren’t.
If only dry garden waste is burnt the occasional bonfire should not cause a major problem. However if a bonfire becomes a persistent problem, interfering substantially with your well being, comfort or enjoyment of your property then action may be taken under the Environmental Protection Act 1990 if it was determined to be a statutory nuisance. If the fire is only occasional, it is difficult to prove nuisance in law.
If bothered by smoke, approach your neighbour and explain the problem. You might feel awkward, but they may not be aware of the distress they are causing and it will hopefully make them more considerate in the future. If this fails contact us. An officer will investigate your complaint and if a statutory nuisance is determined an abatement notice can be served.
If a bonfire of industrial/commercial waste is emitting black smoke it is an offence under Section 2 of the Clean Air Act 1993. Contact us to report black smoke from industrial/commercial burning.
- Aberdeenshire Council Updating and Screening Assessment 2012 (pdf 1.73 mb)
- Air Quality Progress Report 2011 (pdf 1.70 mb)
- Air Quality Progress Report 2010 (pdf 1.34 mb)
- Aberdeenshire Council Updating and Screening Assessment 2009
(pdf 1.47 mb)
- Air Quality Progress Report 2008 (pdf 1.4 mb)
- Air Quality Progress Report 2007 (pdf 623 kb)
- Air Quality Progress Report 2005 (pdf 682 kb)
- Air Quality Progress Report 2004 (pdf 766 kb)