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CVRD Says Check the Venting Index Before Burning

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For one month, beginning on Tuesday, October 15th, Cowichan Valley residents will be allowed to burn yard waste.

The Cowichan Valley Regional District will permit opening burning of yard waste in piles with a maximum size of up to two-meters by two-meters.

The CVRD, however, warns you to consult their venting index before burning that heap of yard trimmings as you can face fines of up to seven-hundred-and-50 dollars for doing so outside of the allowed windows or on poor venting days.

The venting index rating for each day is created by factoring in the various weather conditions that would affect the ability of smoke to disperse in the atmosphere.

BC Environment Ministry Air Quality Meteorologist Earle Plain says looks can be deceiving. He says a sunny, clear and cool morning can actually be a bad time for burning.

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Plain says don’t burn waste in the evening, especially a cold clear evening, because air at the ground level may be cooler than the air layer above, making it difficult for the smoke to disperse.

The CVRD tracks conditions at air quality monitoring stations located across the region. The stations feed real-time data to the CVRD website, which is then displayed on a map.

To avoid fines for burning when conditions are not the best, check out the venting index first.

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