What comes out of a burn barrel depends on the types of trash that went in and the temperature of the fire. Burn barrels usually have fires that burn at low temperatures compared to large incinerator plants. The National Center for Air Pollution Control has stated that lower burning temperatures result in more harmful fumes in the air and hazardous materials in the ash.
According to the NYS Department of Health, among the toxic chemicals released by burning household trash and their potential effects are:
Other toxic compounds released from burning trash may include:
Besides the cancer-causing aspects of these chemicals, some may also cause:
Content for this page was written or compiled by CCE of Schuyler County.
Last updated February 1, 2019