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New Smoke Regulations open for comment

26 May 2017

The Government is seeking comment from the community on new draft Smoke Regulations, which will replace the current regulations in August.

As required under legislation, a Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) has been prepared to assess the impacts of the proposed Environmental Management and Pollution Control (Smoke) Regulations 2017, drafted as a replacement for the Environmental Management and Pollution Control (Distributed Atmospheric Emissions) Regulations 2007.

The current Regulations expire on 15 August 2017 and the Government aims to have the new Smoke Regulations in place by that date. The period for comment on the draft Regulations and the RIS is open until Friday 30 June 2017.

The draft Regulations 2017 are largely the same as the current regulations, with both aiming to limit the smoke produced by heaters, fireplaces, outdoor cooking appliances and 'backyard burning' in and around urban areas.

The new Regulations intend to achieve this by maintaining restrictions on the types of wood heaters that can be sold, as well as on their operation and smoke emissions. They will also place limitations on the smoke emissions from other forms of heating and cooking, the conditions under which backyard burning can take place and the types of material that may not be burnt.

Rather than trying to specify controls on every conceivable heating appliance, type of heater operation or burning activity in urban areas, the draft Regulations cover situations that frequently occur in everyday life.

The RIS demonstrates that the proposed Regulations strike a reasonable balance between the use of wood-fired heating and cooking and occasional backyard burning of ‘clean’ waste with the need to protect human health and improve environmental amenity.

Submissions are invited on any aspect of the RIS and draft Smoke Regulations, which are provided as one document which is available on the EPA website at www.epa.tas.gov.au/ policy-site/Pages/DAE-Regulations.aspx

Submissions must be received by 5.00pm, Friday 30 June 2017 and should be emailed to Enquiries@epa.tas.gov.au, or mailed to Smoke Regulations Review, EPA Tasmania, GPO Box 1751, Hobart, TAS 7001.