Tuesday, May 7, 2024

Polaris of Enlightenment

Tuesday, May 7, 2024

Polaris of Enlightenment

New EU law prohibits citizens from lighting fires in their own backyards

Published 13 April 2024
- By Editorial Staff
There will still be some opportunities to organize your own Valpurgis night bonfires, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

Swedes and other EU citizens will no longer be allowed to burn garden waste in their yards. A new EU law bans the burning of leaves, grass clippings and branches and makes it harder to organize your own Walpurgis Night bonfires.

Under the new law, which came into force in January this year, decision-makers in Brussels have decided that Swedish gardeners must now recycle their garden waste. The law means that both households and businesses must have a separate collection of bio-waste, in other words, grass clippings, leaves, branches, stumps and the like must be disposed of at a recycling center.

The ban is controlled by the municipalities, which decide how to implement the ban. However, it may be possible to make exceptions.

– One reason could be that it is very far to the nearest recycling center. It could be decided that it costs more than it is worth to transport the waste and therefore allow incineration. But it is up to the municipality to make that assessment, Milla Sundström, administrator in the waste and chemicals unit at the Environmental Protection Agency, told TV4 Nyheterna.

Different interpretations of the law

Another question has been whether you can make your own Walpurgis Night bonfires in your garden. According to the municipality of Bollnäs, for example, the new EU law means a strict no, and you can only apply for an exemption for public Walpurgis Night bonfires. Sundström, however, interprets the law differently and believes that there may still be a way to organize your own bonfires.

– This is a question we’ve been asked a lot, whether this means you can’t have bonfires anymore. But there is a possibility to have them, she says.

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