Backyard burning is banned for most Nanaimo homes

Backyard burning is by permit ONLY, and only in April and November


Nanaimo Fire Rescue is reminding residents that backyard burning is banned for anyone that does not have a permit, and permits can only be purchased for properties that are greater than an acre in size, or properties on Protection Island.

Other specific conditions of the Fire Bylaw that must be met include Friday and Saturday burning and only during daylight hours, fire size restrictions and limitations on burnable materials. The City encourages residents who are planning a backyard burn to familiarize themselves with the Fire Bylaw and the complete list of required conditions to obtain a permit.

These outdoor burning restrictions are for outdoor, residential backyard burning and burn piles only. The use of gas and charcoal barbeques, gas fire bowls, pits and fireplaces, wood pellet or chip smokers and small cooking fires (less than 24 inches diameter) are still permitted.

Strategic Link: By regulating burning in the City of Nanaimo, the impact to the environment is minimized therefore supporting the Environmental Responsibility pillar in the City's strategic plan.

Key Points

  • Burning permits may be issued for an open burning fire on a lot that is one acre in size or greater OR lots located on Protection Island.
  • Burning is only permitted from sunrise to sunset, Fridays and Saturdays, during the months of April and November. Only organic yard waste materials such as garden refuse and prunings may be burned.
  • Burning of wooden construction material, stumps, land clearing materials/debris or household garbage is not permitted.
  • Fires shall not exceed 1.5 meters across in size, must be hand fed and shall be located at least 3 meters from any combustibles. A charged hose or a bucket of water must be located nearby and at the ready to extinguish the fire should it be necessary.


"We are seeing an increase in the number of complaints regarding illegal backyard burning and would like to remind residents of the burning regulations in effect. "

Fire Prevention Officer
Nanaimo Fire Rescue

Quick Facts

  • Residents are reminded to review the Fire Bylaw by visiting to see if they meet the specific conditions to obtain a burn permit.
  • Tending an open fire is an important responsibility. Anyone issued a burning permit must ensure a competent person is at all times in charge of the fire until it is completely extinguished.
  • A burning permit can be obtained by calling Nanaimo Fire Rescue at (250) 753-7311.


Umesh Lal
Fire Prevention Officer
Nanaimo Fire Rescue

Print News Release

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