Healthy Environment, Healthy Community, Healthy Business

Environment Protection Authority

Environmental Issues

Chemicals and pesticides

Safe disposal

Treated timber contain chemicals that can be harmful to the environment, your health or your children’s health. They should be safely disposed of: never burnt or buried.

treated timber offcuts

Dispose of treated timber correctly

Do:

  • wear gloves while handling the timber
  • only put small amounts of treated timber offcuts in your regular rubbish bin
  • dispose of treated timber from larger household building or demolition jobs at a licenced landfill site
  • dispose of treated timber sawdust correctly: double bag large amounts and take them to a licenced landfill site

Don’t:

  • use treated timber sawdust or wood shavings for mulch, compost, or animal bedding
  • use leftover timber and offcuts to make animal housing
  • mix treated timber with other timber products for recycling – most treated timber cannot be recycled
  • leave CCA-treated timber where others may take it and use it for firewood – for example, on your nature strip. (You can leave treated timber out for council pickups, but try to put it out early on pickup day to reduce the chance of people taking it.)

Never burn or bury treated timber

Burning treated timber releases toxic chemicals.

  • Never burn treated timber or treated timber waste in outdoor fires, stoves, fireplaces or in confined spaces. 
  • Never use it to cook food.

Treated timber ash

Ash from CCA treated timber is also toxic and may contain more than 10% of its weight as heavy metal residue – including arsenic.

Large amounts of toxic ash can be a big problem when properties are damaged by bushfires or other fires.

  • Wear personal protective equipment (PPE) to clean it up, double bag it and take it to a landfill site.
  • Don't bury it.
Page last updated: 12 May 2016