City and Borough of Juneau
155 S. Seward Street
Juneau, Alaska 99801
tel. 907-586-5240
fax 907-586-5385

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Division of Lands and Resources

Air Quality - Open Burning



Call the woodsmoke hotline for up-to-date information regarding the Mendenhall Valley's air quality

Enforcement - Juneau Police Department - 586-0600

Please call JPD if you notice active burning and/or wood smokeoccuring during an Air Emergency

Further Information - Lands and Resources Office- 586-5252


Online Air Quality Advisory

Updated Wednesday, March 22, 2017 - 8:37 am



During an air emergency, all woodstove burning is prohibited until further notice as outlined in CBJ's ordinance 2008-28 regarding solid fuel-fired burning devices. Pellet Stoves are exempt from the wood stove regulations and can burn at any time. Masonry heaters that fit the definition given by the Masonry Heater Association of North America are also exempt from the wood stove regulations.



An air emergency will be announced through press releases, advertising, and by utilizing the11 neon yellow air emergency signs in the Valley when air particulate levels reach, or are currently at, an unhealthy level and weather conditions will not clear the air. CBJ staff will always update the Online Air Quality Advisory and the Woodsmoke Hotline if an air emergency is or is not in effect.




Woodsmoke Hazard Area Maps

The below maps detail all homes located within the Woodsmoke Hazard Area.

Air Emergency Sign Location Map

Detailed Map  - Mendenhall Valley Smoke Hazard Area

Wood Smoke Hazard Map 2


Open Burning

All open burning is prohibited in the Mendenhall Valley and Lemon Creek area from October 1st through April 30th. Please use the below permit application for open burning between May 1st-November 1st.

Open Burn Permit Application (May 1-November 1)

Open Burning Restriction Zone Map


What Does Poor Air Quality in the Valley Look Like?


Below are hourly air samples of fine particulates (pm 2.5) that were present in the Valley’s air during the 2015-16 air quality monitoring season. These samples were taken at the Department of Environmental Conservation’s Floyd Dryden Station, and demonstrate what is usually invisible to the eye: fine particulates from wood smoke.

Fine particulates from wood smoke are the ones that can lodge themselves deep into the lungs and significantly impact children, elders, and those with breathing difficulties. The darker the circles, the dirtier the air. If the air is clean, the hourly samples will run clear (almost invisible to the eye) when looking at the Beta Attenuation Monitor (BAM) tape. CBJ Lands and Resources staff monitors the data produced from these hourly air samples, and will call an air emergency if numerous readings in a row show that the air quality could threaten human health.


What an Air Inversion Looks like in the Mendenhall Valleycid:image004.jpg@01D20858.D7032EE0

Photo taken from East Glacier Trail looking towards Montana Creek.


Notice the thick blanket of smoke shown above? That "blanket" or air inversion will continue to trap all the fine particulates from woodsmoke and open burning until wind or rain clean out the air. When it looks like an air inversion is forming, the City's goal is to temporarily stop the use of Valley woodstoves and prevent the high concentration of fine particulates underneath that smoky blanket.


Monitoring the Mendenhall Valley’s air quality would not be possible without the collaboration and support of the Department of Environmental Conservation, Division of Air Quality team and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Juneau Forecast Office who collect and interpret the data. Additional partnerships are with the Juneau Police Department, who enforce the air emergencies and burn bans, and the CBJ Clerks Office, which has posted when air emergencies are in effect or cancelled on the CBJ Facebook.


On October 5, 2016, CBJ Lands and Resources staff along with Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation went on Juneau Afternoon to discuss the 2016-17 Air Quality Monitoring Program. If you missed the conversation, click the below KTOO link and start listening in at minute 46.



2016 Annual Ambient Monitoring Network Plan Out for Public Comment

The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (ADEC), Air Monitoring and Quality Assurance Program is making Alaska’s 2016 Annual Ambient Air Monitoring Network Plan available for public review and comment. The Annual Air Monitoring Plan explains the network’s monitoring objectives and priorities. The plan provides a description of all current ADEC network air quality monitoring sites and discusses any current or planned modifications.


The document is available at and is submitted to fulfill the annual network review requirement per 40 CFR 58.10. The plan will be available for public comment for 30 days. The deadline for comments is 5 pm Alaska time, February 17, 2017. All comments may be directed to Barbara Trost at ADEC’s Air Quality Division office in Anchorage:


Barbara Trost
Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation
Division of Air Quality
555 Cordova Street, 1st Floor
Anchorage AK 99501
Fax (907) 269-7508
) 269-6249


The State of Alaska, Department of Environmental Conservation complies with Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. If you are a person with a disability who may need a special accommodation in order to participate in this public process, please contact Natalie Wolfe at (907) 269-0291 or TDD Relay Service 1-800-770-8973/TTY or dial 711 within 30days of publication of this notice to ensure that any necessary accommodations can be provided.




More Information

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