News

Spare the Air days, open burning ban are back with summer-like heat

Programs aimed at reducing fire risks, air pollution

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection announced a ban on open burning in parts of Alameda County yesterday at the same time the Bay Area Air Quality Management District announced the start of the 2014 summer Spare the Air season.

The open burn ban also includes parts of Contra

Costa, Santa Clara, San Mateo, Santa Cruz, San Benito, Stanislaus, San Joaquin and Monterey counties.

The affected areas are experiencing severe drought conditions and increased fire activity, according to forestry and fire authorities.

Agriculture, land management, fire training and other industrial-type burning is allowed if a CAL FIRE official inspects the burn site and issues a special permit to specifically exempt a burn from this ban.

Campfires will continue to be allowed in designated campgrounds or in established facilities on private property.

For more information on how to prepare for and prevent wildfires,

visit www.readyforwildfire.org.

With regard to the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, the new Spare the Air days could start at any time. The program encourages Bay Area residents to reduce air pollution every day by carpooling, taking transit, driving less, walking and biking.

The Bay Area Air Quality Management District is the regional agency chartered with protecting air quality in the Bay Area.

For more information on the district and Spare the Air, visit

www.baagmd.gov and www.sparetheair.org.

Dennis Culver, Bay City News

— Bay City News Service

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