Environmental guidance for your business in Northern Ireland & Scotland
What you must do
In Northern Ireland burning straw or stubble in the open on the farm is strongly discouraged. If you have no other alternative then you will be allowed to burn if you have registered an exemption with the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA), and follow the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD) guidelines.
In Scotland you may burn stubble and straw. But burning is strongly discouraged by the environmental regulators.
Even if straw and stubble burning is allowed you must not emit dark smoke. Dark smoke is finely divided particles of matter suspended in the air as a visible cloud.
You should bale and cart straw from fields or chop the straw and plough it into the soil before establishing the next crop.
If burning of stubble and straw is permitted, you should consult the codes of good agricultural practice for more information on how to safely burn crop residues.
In Northern Ireland, see section 11.2 of the DARD code of good agricultural practice for water, air and soil.
In Scotland, see section 13.26 of the Prevention of Environmental Pollution from Agricultural Activity (PEPFAA) Code.
The Northern Ireland Environment Agency has published a short guide to the duty of care responsibilities including advice and information for waste producers, carriers and those accepting, storing and treating waste.
Any person intending to alter the use or management of areas of uncultivated or semi-natural land must obtain prior approval from the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA).
Read more on the DAERA website
The NetRegs team at SEPA, in partnership with The Northern Ireland Environment Agency, Natural Resources Wales and a number of industry bodies have produced 9 new GPPs to replace out of date PPGs. More are coming! Check the available topics
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