NPDES NATIONAL POLLUTION DISCHARGE ELIMINATION SYSTEM What SC private landowners should know before applying forestry pesticides Presented By: Joey Ferguson, Resource Management Service, L.L.C. Georgetown, S.C.
The SC NPDES General Permit – What is it? • A blanket permit required of every state by the EPA designed to regulate various categories of pesticide application onto surface waters • In SC, the Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) Bureau of Water administers NPDES permitting • If application does not deposit pesticides onto surface waters of the State, coverage under the permit is not needed
What types of pesticide applications are covered under the SC NPDES general permit? The Permit covers 5 major “Use Patterns” • Aquatic weed and algae control • Mosquito and flying insect control • Aquatic nuisance animal control • Forest pest control (pest=plants & insects) • Intrusive vegetation control
Side note: What about pesticide applications on agricultural lands? • Coverage under the permit is not required if the application of pesticides on agricultural land is not into water • Obligations under the Federal Insecticide Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) continue to apply to agricultural application of pesticides
Should I be covered by the SC NPDES general permit? • Probably…that is if you or your for-hire applicator apply, or even think you might possibly apply forestry pesticides directly to surface waters of the State (such as intermittent and perennial streams, isolated wetlands, natural water courses, etc.) then you should consider coverage under the permit. • Roadside ditches are not typically considered waters of the state according to DHEC • Both air and ground applications are covered under the general permit
Why do I need to be covered? • To demonstrate you are taking the necessary steps to protect water quality, endangered species, and critical habitat • To comply with DHEC requirements pertaining to pesticide “use patterns” • To add a layer of protection between you and potential liability arising from your pesticide application activities
What do I need to do to be covered? • Application to less than 6,400 acres per year (cumulative) will receive automatic coverage under the SC general permit. (For applications greater than 6,400 acres per year, additional requirements apply, see permit for details) • Guidelines for record keeping, monitoring, reporting, and record retention should be followed to capture coverage under the general permit • Before you start any application, be certain that your for-hire applicator is aware of, and in compliance with, permit guidelines for applicators. The permit document has all the details for applicators • And remember… If you have ever been through an audit you will quickly discover that if you did not document it, it did not happen!
Where can I get more information? Pick-up a copy of the flyer we have prepared for you….In it you will find private landowner tips plus additional information on the SC NPDES permit including contact information for DHEC’s Bureau of Water
SC NPDES GENERAL PERMIT QUESTIONS?