Province restricts open burning across much of the Cowichan region

No new fires may be initiated in all high smoke sensitivity zones

The Province of BC has restricted open burning for all high smoke sensitivity zones in the province, which includes the Cowichan Valley.

The Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy, in collaboration with provincial public health partners, has issued open burning restrictions for all High Smoke Sensitivity Zones across the province until Wednesday April 15, 2020. No new fires may be initiated and no additional material may be added to existing fires.

This provincial order overrides the Cowichan Valley Regional District Smoke Control Regulation Bylaw, which permits open burning between March 15 and April 15 when the venting index is ‘good.’

“We appreciate the Province and health authorities for recognizing the importance of preventing air quality degradation and taken necessary action during this critical time,” said Aaron Stone, chair of the Cowichan Valley Regional District. “We expect all residents to comply with this direction, and will be resourcing enforcement action as required going forward.”

The BC Air Quality Map highlights those areas covered by the provincial order, and additional information on the provincial order can be found in the ministry news release.

More information on our regional response can be found on the COVID-19 Information page of the CVRD website, and a list of announcements and resources is available through the COVID-19 Reference Guide, updated daily.

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