UCCE Sonoma County
University of California
UCCE Sonoma County

Prescribed Burns in Sonoma County

About Prescribed Burns

To conduct any outdoor burning (beyond fire pits), approval must be obtained from your local district of the California Air Resources Control Board (CARB). CARB establishes the framework for the burn program and local air districts implement and enforce local rules and regulations. 

A Smoke Management Plan (SMP) is required for prescribed burns. But the requirements for the SMP and steps for approval each CARB district differ. Best practices is to contact your local CARB district office early in the process.

Burning in Sonoma County

Sonoma County has two CARB Districts, they have different procedures for obtaining approval for control and agriculture burns. 

Determine your ARB District by entering your address.

Once you know your district, learn steps to conduct prescribed burns:

Active Rx Fires

To learn where prescribed burns are occurring:

  • PFIRS - this site shows larger approved burns throughout CA.
  • PulsePoint for iOS and Android - shows all approved burns, including burn piles. Plus handy first aid information. 
    Highly recommend for EVERYONE. 

Additional Resources


Living with Fire in the WUI: Q&A, May 2, 2019 YubaNet

Planned burns can reduce wildfire risks, but expanding use of 'good fire' isn't easy, April 25, 2019, The Conversation

The worst fire in CA history illuminates fire preparation needs, April 4, 2019, UCANR Green Blog

New project ot build climate resilience through improved land management, February 7, 2019, UCANR Green Blog

The New Abnormal: A Town Hall on California's Fires and the Future, Dec 4, 2018, The Commonwealth Club

Catastrophic wildfires and climate change lead to growing acceptance of ‘pyrosilviculture’, Nov 15, 2018 UCANR GreenBlog 

Why CA's Best Strategy Against Wildfire (Rx Burns) is Hardly Ever Used, July 16, 2018 KQED 


Air Quality CA map

  • Prescribed Fire Information Reporting System an interface between air quality managers, land management agencies, and individuals that conduct prescribed burning in California. PFIRS enables individuals involved in prescribed burning the ability to view this information on a statewide level.
  • CARB Maps a variety of air quality maps available on the CARB site.
  • 7 Day Forecast by National Weather Service of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) for Santa Rosa.
  • Purple Air air quality and particulate sensors along with include temperature and humidity where available.
  • Windy.com using Global Forecast System and NOAA Environmental Modeling System, shows the movement of wind world wide, zoom to your location. 




University of California Cooperative Extension, Sonoma County
133 Aviation Blvd Suite 109, Santa Rosa, CA 95403  Phone: 707.565.2621  Fax: 707.565.2623
Office Hours:  M-F, 8am-Noon & 1pm-4pm

Like us on Facebook: UCCE Sonoma                        Follow us on Twitter @UCCESonoma 

Webmaster Email: klgiov@ucanr.edu