Permits to Burn

Burn pile

What you need to know

A Permit to Burn is required by the NTFRS year round within their Emergency Response Areas (ERAs).

Not in an NTFRS ERA? Then you will fall under BushfiresNT rules and regulations, contact BushfiresNT for more information.

Permits are available, weather and operational requirements permitting, generally from December to May and requests will only be received between 8am and 6pm, Monday to Saturday. Burning is not permitted at any time in the municipal areas, such as Darwin and Palmerston etc.

All permits will cease at a date advertised to the public by the NTFRS with closure decisions routinely assessed encompassing all ERAs rather than individual locations (e.g. Humpty Doo).


Permits to Burn for rural landholders are not available at this time.

To obtain a permit contact your local fire station during business hours (weekdays) or Volunteer Fire Brigade (weekends) for inspections and issuing of permits.

The NTFRS encourage all landholders to consider alternatives to burning wherever possible, and landowners to take advantage of the Street Sign Program, so that properties are easily identifiable in an emergency, not just a fire. Signs are produced at cost (approx $20 each) and can be obtained from the Humpty Doo Police Station, Humpty Doo Hardware and Virginia Shop.

Requirements vary and are assessed individually on a case by case basis, however they generally necessitate that:

  • there is water on hand;
  • someone monitors the fire until it is completely extinguished;
  • neighbours must be notified at least 48 hours before applying for a Permit to Burn;
  • neighbours must be given a reasonable opportunity to object – this can be done by contacting the Hazard Abatement Officer on 89464167;
  • only green waste materials – no rubbish of any type to be burnt; and
  • special conditions on all permits must be adhered to, at all times.

Penalties apply as per the Fire and Emergency Act 2016 for any breach of the conditions on a permit with fines starting at $656.00

It is extremely important that if anyone witnesses unlawful burning, or suspects unlawful burning to be occurring, immediately ring the 24 hour Fire Assistance line and report it. You may be preventing a fire emergency.

Contact your local fire station or volunteer fire brigade

NOTE: Other fire districts (like BushfiresNT) within the NT set local policy, governed by the prevailing weather, topography and fuel state.