Yakima Clean Air Authority Hopes to Educate More People About Burn Bans - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Yakima Clean Air Authority Hopes to Educate More People About Burn Bans

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YAKIMA, Wa -  Yakima's Clean Air Authority says they are a regulatory agency.   In extreme cases, if you don't follow a burn ban, you could be fined up to $10,000.  But, they say they are more interested in making sure the public knows what the bans mean and why it's important to follow them.

Burn bans are something that anyone who lives in Yakima County will have to become more accustomed to.

"I'm afraid the situation being what it is, we're going to be seeing more burn bans," says Dave Caprile of the Yakima Clean Air Authority.

A new phase in the clean air act is raising air quality standards.  If you burn wood, you need to look out for burn bans and know what they mean.  

First, a Stage I Burn Ban, which allows you to use certified wood stoves, fireplace inserts and pellet stoves.

You cannot do any outdoor agricultural, or residential burning.

And there's no burning in uncertified wood stoves, fireplace inserts, or bare fireplaces.

There is an exception if you have no other heat source, then you may still burn wood.   Often times, in a Stage I Burn Ban, the Yakima Clean Air Authority will ask people with certified devices to voluntarily stop burning.  It helps to get the ban lifted quicker.

In a Stage II Burn Ban, all the restrictions from Stage I apply.  It also says you cannot use certified wood stoves, pellet stoves and fireplace inserts.  The only exception is if it's your only heat source.