Derry City & Strabane - Environmental Health
Health & Community Wellbeing




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Air Quality



Under the Clean Air Act local authorities may declare the whole or part of the district of the authority to be a Smoke Control Area. It is an offence to emit smoke from a chimney of a building, from a furnace or from any fixed boiler if located in a designated Smoke Control Area. It is also an offence to acquire an ‘unauthorised fuel’ for use within a Smoke Control Area unless it is used in an ‘exempt’ appliance (‘exempted’ from the controls which generally apply in the Smoke Control Area). These appliances are generally referred to as ‘DEFRA Approved’ or ‘Smoke Exempt’ and must be operated at all times in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions, which have also been scrutinised during the authorisation process.

Smoke Control Areas, or Smoke Control Zones as they are sometimes referred to, have been designated by local authorities in many towns and cities in the UK, including virtually all of London, Manchester and Belfast. The North West, Midlands, South Yorkshire and North East of England as well as Central and Southern Scotland, all have large designated Smoke Control Areas.

If you live in a Smoke Control Area you must only burn ‘authorised’ smokeless fuels. In such areas burning wood is only ‘authorised’ if you burn it in a Smoke Exempt stove. Even when using a Smoke Exempt stove, you will still be breaking the law if you use wet or unseasoned wood which causes excessive or nuisance smoke.

To find out if your property is in a Smoke Control Area, click HERE

Our leaflet on Smoke Control Areas can be viewed here.

Useful Links

Authorised fuels list for Northern Ireland that can be used in a smoke control area -

Authorised exempt appliances list for use in smoke control area in accordance with manufactures instructions -

Air Quality NI Website detailing air monitoring sites and air quality reports undertaken by Derry City and Strabane District Council -


DAERA Air pollution and Smoke Control Information

Details of air monitoring sites and air quality reports undertaken by Derry City and Strabane District Council can be found at

Contact Details

For further information contact Environment and Neighbourhoods Team on

Tel: 02871 253253