Find out what fuel you can burn on your open fire or wood-burning stove

Certain areas of the country have been designated ‘smoke control areas’ to reduce pollution from chimneys. This means you cannot:

  • emit a substantial amount of smoke from a chimney
  • use unauthorised fuel, unless it's used in an 'exempt' appliance (appliances which are approved for use in smoke control areas)

Check if you live in a smoke control area

To find out which areas of England are designated smoke control areas, see the smoke control area map on Defra’s website.

Banned fuels in smoke control areas

You cannot burn coal on an open fire or wood-burning stove in smoke control areas. Wood can only be burned on exempted appliances, and it must be dry and ready to burn.

If your appliance is not exempt, you can only burn authorised smokeless fuels.

You can be fined up to £1,000 if you do not comply with smoke control regulations.

Read more about the rules of living in smoke control areas on Defra’s website.

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