Burn Permit - Flood and Storm Debris

What is the purpose of this permit?
The purpose of this permit is to allow for the burning of natural vegetation deposited on lands by storms in a way that protects human health and the environment.
Who issues this permit?
Variable: See notes/comments for more information.
What activities require this permit?
This permit is required to burn storm and flood debris resulting from a declared emergency and upon agreement with local fire jurisdictions. Storm and flood debris is natural vegetation such as leaves and branches that is left behind by storms and/or floods. Material is considered storm or flood debris if:
  • The storm or flood occurred in the last two years, and
  • The city, county, or state government declared an emergency as a result of the storm or flood.
When you receive your burn permit, you must do the following BEFORE you burn:
  • Call Ecology’s Daily Burn Decision Hotline at 1-800-406-5322 to make sure you are allowed to burn that day in your county or zone.
  • Notify your local fire protection authority.
  • Follow all general permit conditions as outlined on the permit.
How much will this permit cost?
No fee required.
Where can I get the application for this permit?
The application is called 'Application to Burn Storm and Flood Debris' is online and can be accessed at https://fortress.wa.gov/ecy/publications/summarypages/ECY070318.html.
Do I need to include anything with my application?
See the permit application for details.
Is the decision on my permit dependent on anything besides the information in my application?
When making the decision on your permit, the permitting authority will consider the applicable laws and rules, the contents of your application, and the background environmental conditions.
How long will it take to review my application?
If Ecology issues the permit they will act on a complete application in about one week and will send you either a permit or an explanation of why the application was denied. Incomplete applications will be returned. If a local clean air agency issues the permit, contact them for details.
Where do I submit my application?
See the permit application for where to send your complete application.
How long is my permit valid?
Permits are valid January 1st to June 30th and July 1st to December 31st.
What is the appeal process for the permit?
You have a right to appeal the permit to the Pollution Control Hearings Board (PCHB) within 30 days of the date of receipt of the permit. The appeal process is governed by Chapter 43.21B RCW and Chapter 371-08 WAC. “Date of receipt” is defined in RCW 43.21B.001(2).
Notes / Comments:
Who issues this permit? Department of Ecology and local clean air agencies issue this permit. Check the application form for the counties where Ecology issues the permit. If your county is not listed, then contact your local clean air agencies. Where Can I Get the Application for this Permit? If the local clean air agency issues the permit contact them for their application.
Legal Authority:
Permit Timeliness Results

Permit Timeliness data collection is in response to a State Auditor’s Performance Audit and RCW 43.42A. Each regulatory agency developed a plan to improve permit clarity, predictability, and timeliness. Each agency considers the customers experience to ensure permit assistance is simple to use, easy to access, and designed in a customer-friendly manner. Agencies report progress to the Governor’s Office for Regulatory Innovation and Assistance (ORIA). ORIA prepares and distributes reports, with participation from the State Auditor’s Office and Results Washington. See latest report here: https://www.oria.wa.gov/ORIA-2020-PermitTimelinessProgressReport.pdf.

All permits submitted for reporting were entered into this Regulatory Handbook. Here are the results of the performance data:

Estimated Time Required By the Agency to Process a Permit Application (Definition)
Average number of days from Receipt to Complete: 1
Maximum number of days from Receipt to Complete: 1

Estimated Time Required By the Agency to Issue a Permit Decision (Definition)
Average number of days from Complete Application to Decision: 1
Maximum number of days from Complete Application to Decision: 1

(Summary results based on 2 submittals in 2022, no data for current year)

Where can I get permitting assistance?
Web page URL: https://ecology.wa.gov/Regulations-Permits/Permits-certifications/Air-Quality-permits/Burn-permits
Subject matter expert phone: Contacts vary by location, visit: https://ecology.wa.gov/Regulations-Permits/Permits-certifications/Air-Quality-permits/Burn-permits
Department of Ecology
300 Desmond Drive
PO Box 47600
Olympia, WA 98504-7600
Telephone: (360) 407-6000
Website: http://www.ecology.wa.gov/
* Permit information last updated 1/10/2023