May 05, 2017

Contact: Communications Office

Department of Natural Resources issues waiver to aid debris cleanup following flooding

Rules relaxed on disposal of appliances, yard debris and open burning

JEFFERSON CITY, MO, MAY 5, 2017 – The Missouri Department of Natural Resources has waived specific solid waste and air pollution regulations following significant flooding.  The waiver gives residents and communities in affected counties throughout the state additional flexibility in cleaning up damages associated with heavy rain, flooding and flash flooding that began April 28.

The waiver allows for the disposal of damaged or destroyed major appliances and yard wastes in permitted sanitary or demolition landfills willing to accept such wastes. Cities and counties should coordinate collection efforts of damaged appliances so refrigerants can be legally recovered from air conditioners, freezers and refrigerators before disposal. Additional, to the extent possible, the department encourages the recycling of appliances and composting or mulching of yard waste.

The waiver also allows for the burning of woody vegetation resulting from the severe storms and flooding that began on April 28 as long as it is burned on the property where it originated. Burning is not allowed within non-attainment areas, which includes the counties of St. Louis, St. Charles, Jefferson and Franklin as well as the city of St. Louis, or where local prohibitions are enforced. Residents should contact their local governmental agency for information regarding any prohibitions. Community burn sites located within the corporate limits of any municipality must receive a permit from the department, which also requires approval by local fire officials.

The vegetative material must be burned at least 200 yards from the nearest occupied structure. The department is asking community officials to consider the 200-yard buffer as a minimum and to select burn locations carefully, taking local air quality, public health and safety, and other effects on neighborhoods into consideration.

The waiver shall be in effect until June 4, 2017 unless extended.  Further information, including the full text of the waiver, is available on

Local officials should call their nearest Department of Natural Resources’ regional office for additional information or clarification of the waiver including: Kansas City Regional Office at 816-251-0700; Northeast Regional Office at 660-385-8000; St. Louis Regional Office at 314-416-2960; Southeast Regional Office at 573-840-9750 or Southwest Regional Office at 417-891-4300.