“Smoke from burning leaves contains harmful chemicals such as carbon monoxide and particulates that can be toxic,” said Rick Kozin, director of Polk County Health Department.
The smoke generated by burning leaves can also cause health problems.
Leaf smoke can irritate the eyes, nose and throat of healthy adults.
Why is burning of leaves harmful?
Leaf burning is banned in most municipalities because it leads to air pollution, health problems and fire hazards. Leaf smoke may also contain hazardous chemicals such as carbon monoxide, which can bind with hemoglobin in the bloodstream and reduce the amount of oxygen in the blood and lungs.
Why are burn barrels illegal?
Using burn barrels is illegal
The fires in burn barrels receive little oxygen and create toxic smoke that stays low to the ground. Burn barrels are illegal statewide.
Is it safe to burn leaves?
Burning leaves means watching perfectly good natural nutrients go up in smoke. It is not legal in some cities, so be sure to check your local ordinances before burning. Keep your piles small and manageable, adding leaves as the pile burns down.
Can burning leaves cause cancer?
Carbon monoxide is found in the smoke from burning leaves, and so is benzo(a)pyrene, a chemical byproduct that may also be a potential factor in lung cancer. Breathing in this smoke can cut the amount of oxygen in your lungs and blood, leading to short- or even long-term damage.