If you have a pile of debris that you plan on burning, you better strike the match soon as all backyard burning, including camp fires, is about to be banned in Courtenay.

Monday night, a recommendations made by fire chief Don Bardonnex, was agreed on by city councilors to strengthen an existing burning bylaw, and to end the fires indefinitely.

The major reason for the change is cleaner air, as the smoke from backyard fires, especially on very calm days, can actually build to hazardous levels.

These days backyard burning is completely unnecessary. For a few years now the City of Courtenay has offered free curb side pickup of yard waste, which is then composted and recycled. Find out when they are picking up in your area and place your yard waste in compostable bags or cans clearly labeled as yard waste. Its better for the environment, and its better for your lungs.