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New Jersey Drought Information -

Administrative Order 2002-20 to Ammend and Supplement

I, Bradley M. Campbell, Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (Department), pursuant to the authority vested in me by Executive Order No. 11, issued by Governor James E. McGreevey on March 4, 2002, the Water Supply Management Act, N.J.S.A. 58:1A-1 et seq., and its implementing rules, N.J.A.C. 7:19, hereby supplement previously issued Administrative Order No. 2002-18, imposing Phase I - Mandatory Water Use Restrictions. This Administrative Order is intended to supplement Administrative Order No. 2002-18. Except as specifically provided herein, the provisions of Administrative Order No. 2002-18 shall remain in effect. I have determined this Order to be necessary to ensure an adequate water supply to the State, to alleviate the water emergency and to be in the public interest.

As described in Executive Order No. 11, New Jersey is divided into six Drought Regions based upon watershed location and other conditions relevant to water supply. The boundaries of these Drought Regions and the municipalities included within each region can be viewed on the DEP drought web page at

Due to a lack of precipitation since late June, the State continues to be threatened with drought, making open burning increasingly risky. The dry conditions increase the risk that a fire could spread out of control. Therefore, through this Order I am reinstating restrictions on open burning. Limited exemptions are provided, primarily for permitted agricultural burning and campfires under controlled conditions. Agricultural burning is important for disposal of herbaceous and woody plant material that may be diseased or infested, or that may pose a fire hazard later in the year. In addition, the exemption is conditioned on obtaining a permit from the NJ Forest Fire Service.

The restrictions in this Order apply uniformly Statewide.

I hereby order the following:

SECTION I. Statewide Water Use Restrictions

The following restrictions and authorizations apply in all six Drought Regions:

  1. - 13. No change.

  3. In accordance with N.J.S.A. Title 13, Chapter 9 (Forest Fire Laws) and N.J.A.C. Title 7, Chapter 27, Subchapter 2 (Control and Prohibition of Open Burning), open burning is hereby prohibited, with the following exceptions:

  4. A. Outdoor barbecues;

    B. Permits authorized for religious ceremonies; and

    C. Agricultural open burning and campfires, provided:
    1. The Buildup Index is below 40;

    2. The local New Jersey Forest Fire Service Firewarden has been contacted and has approved the specific burn;

    3. For agricultural burning, the appropriate permit has been obtained from the New Jersey Forest Fire Service Divisional Headquarters, and from the local municipality if required; and

    4. For a campfire, the fire shall be, at a minimum, within a prepared fire ring at a campground, and authorized and permitted by the local NJ Forest Fire Service Firewarden or their designee.

This Order shall take effect immediately and shall remain in effect until superseded or terminated by my action or by action of the Governor of the State of New Jersey.


Date: August 8, 2002 _________________
  Bradley M. Campbell


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