We understand that farmers experience difficulties after bushfires.

Our waste disposal advice aims to reduce burdens on farmers. It also aims to help protect people and farms from bushfires' after-effects.

After bushfires, landowners, farmers and authorities may need to dispose of large amounts of waste. This can include:

  • dead animals 
  • spoilt milk 
  • building rubble. 

You must dispose of bushfire waste in the right way. This prevents harm to the environment and human health.

Dead animals and livestock

If you cannot move dead animals to landfill, bury them at your site. Follow our Farm Waste Management guideline (publication IWRG641) to do this.

You need to protect groundwater (stored below ground) and surface water from contamination when disposing of dead animals. You also need to protect yourself and neighbours from odour and other potential health hazards. For example, soil contamination.

Agriculture Victoria also has information about disposing of dead animals after bushfire.

Spoilt milk

Bushfire can cause power outages that cause milk to spoil. It is important to dispose of spoilt milk in the right way. This prevents harm to the environment and human health.

You can discharge small amounts of spoilt milk into effluent ponds, but this can lead to odour issues.

Farms can also dispose of spoilt milk via: 

  • irrigation 
  • trenching 
  • disposing to non-productive land areas (if no off-site impacts).

See our Farm Waste Management guideline (publication IWRG641) for help disposing of spoilt milk. Agriculture Victoria also has spoilt milk disposal advice.

Contact us for further information.

Building rubble

Building rubble from bushfires mainly includes a mixture of: 

  • brick 
  • concrete 
  • asphalt 
  • timber. 

Dispose of building rubble to a landfill licensed to receive it. Do not leave this material on land without EPA approval. 

More information about disposing of bushfire waste

Fact sheet: Disposal of bushfire waste (publication 1738) 

Our emergency information page 

Contact us

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Reviewed 9 December 2021