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Submit a Complaint

What is an air quality complaint?

An air quality complaint is a formal complaint about a nuisance or annoyance concerning emissions of air contaminants including smoke, dust, odors or other air contaminants.

How do I report an air quality complaint?

Online Complaint Submission Instructions

Complaints received after normal business hours or during the non-work day may be dispatched to an inspector the next business day.

Do I have to identify myself when I report an air quality complaint?

MBARD encourages people reporting stationary source air quality problems to provide their name, address, email, and telephone number. This information helps MBARD inspectors to verify complaint information, including any prior history of air quality problems involving the alleged source, and allows them to inform complainants of the status of complaint investigation activities. Your personal information, such as, name, email,  and phone number, will be kept confidential to the extent allowed by state and federal law. Such information may only be released under very limited and unique circumstances, if required by the California Public Records Act or if requested under a subpoena or used in court proceedings.

How are air quality complaints handled?

Whenever possible, an inspector will contact a complainant to determine the cause of the complaint and the nature and source of the alleged air quality problem.

While some complaints can be resolved over the telephone and require no further follow-up, others may need a site inspection.  If MBARD finds a violation occurred, an enforcement action may follow. If  MBARD determines there was not an enforceable violation or that there is not enough evidence to pursue enforcement, staff will work with the parties in hopes of alleviating the issue.

Smoke from Fireplaces, Wood Stoves, and Fire Pits

Burning wood in fireplaces, wood stoves and fire pits is legal under MBARD's rules and regulations. We encourage the public to be aware of the smoke generated by their activities and minimize smoke through clean burning actions such as only burning dry wood, not allowing fires to smolder, or choosing a cleaner burning fuel such as propane or natural gas.

What kind of issues does MBARD not regulate? 

  • Aircraft Contrails
  • Tobacco and Cannabis Smoke
  • Mold and Mildew
  • Lead Paint
  • Odors from Agricultral Operations
  • Pesticide Application
  • Noise Pollution
  • Smoking Vehicles - Please call the California Air Resources Board to report smoking vehicles at (800)363-7664 or visit Smoking Vehicle Program at:

Additional air quality complaint references

If you would like to contact the California Air Resources Board about a complaint, please call (800) 952-5588 or go to for more information.

If you would like to contact the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency about a complaint please call (415) 947-4142 or go to