Avoid burning your stubble or at least be careful

By Southern Riverina News

Landholders are being asked to take extra care and responsibility when it comes to stubble burning, particularly during the Easter and Anzac Day periods.

The Ricegrowers’ Association of Australia, Murrumbidgee Council, and the Irrigation Research and Extension Committee say where possible, stubble burning should be avoided during the holidays.

RGA environmental projects manager Neil Bull said all landholders need to support regional communities and ensure that all who participate in the range of planned community activities do so under the best possible conditions.

‘‘It is important to take all possible steps to minimise the adverse effects of smoke on neighbours and neighbouring townships,’’ Mr Bull said.

‘‘Farmers are preparing for the planting of winter crops and many will be burning stubble. We ask them to reduce the effects on those living nearby.

‘‘Growers are asked to be mindful of the impacts that smoke can have on nearby communities and only burn when conditions are appropriate.

‘‘Growers should plan their burning strategy to avoid inappropriate conditions. Monitor prevailing weather conditions and avoid burning late in the day or when there is no wind, as this is when inversion layers are most likely to be present.’’

Mr Bull said the Bureau of Meteorology website has a mixing height tool to help growers plan stubble burns.

‘‘Visit the MetEye section of the Bureau of Meteorology website and use the tool to get a forecast for burning conditions and wind speed and direction over the next few days at your location,’’ he said.

‘‘For more information about this tool, and alternatives to burning, growers should refer to the Responsible Stubble Management fact sheet on the RGA website.’’