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You are here: Home FAQ General Questions I'm told that I will need a Virginia Pollution Discharge Elimination System (VPDES) permit to apply pesticides to, near, or over water. How can I learn more about this requirement?

I'm told that I will need a Virginia Pollution Discharge Elimination System (VPDES) permit to apply pesticides to, near, or over water. How can I learn more about this requirement?

A recent court ruling (January 2009) determined that Clean Water Act (CWA) National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permits are required for:

  • all biological pesticide applications, and
  • chemical pesticide applications that leave a residue in water

when such applications are made in or over, including near, waters of the U.S.

 

Permits were supposed to be in place by April of 2011.

 

As an EPA-authorized state, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) administers the Virginia Pollution Discharge Elimination System (VPDES).  DEQ drafted a Pesticides General Permit Regulation (9VAC25-800).  It was adopted by the VA Water Control Board in February of 2011.  It issues a "blanket" general permit for pesticide applications made to, over, or near waters of the state.

 

However, EPA was granted a 6-month extension for NPDES. Subsequently, the Director of VA's DEQ suspended the effective date of the VPDES pesticides general permit -- so our state is "in synch".  The VA Pesticides General Permit Regulation has a revised effective date of October 31, 2011.

 

The Virginia Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (VPDES) Pesticide Discharges General Permit regulates residues of applications of pesticides to, near, or over water.  Specifically, the VPDES general permit covers point source discharges into waters of the state that control:

  •  mosquitoes, black flies, and other flying insect pests;
  •  aquatic weeds, algae, and pathogens;
  •  aquatic nuisance animals (ex. snakehead fish and zebra mussels); and
  •  forest canopy pests (ground and aerial canopy spraying).

 

Applicators who apply pesticides as described above will not be required to submit a registration statement (notice of intent) to the State Water Control Board.  However, operators working under the VPDES general ("blanket") permit do have some specific requirements to fulfill.  The permit requires use of Integrated Pest Management practices, visual monitoring, and reporting of any adverse affect due to the application of pesticides. In addition, application records and development of a Pesticide Discharge Management Plan (PDMP) is required for operators that exceed certain annual application thresholds.

 

For a list of basic requirements, thresholds, and other information, refer to this website:

 http://www.deq.virginia.gov/vpdes/homepage.html

 

(Scroll down...as of April 2011, the Pesticide Discharges General Permit Regulation information, including a fact sheet and template for a Pesticide Discharge Management Plan (PDMP) is at the bottom of the page.)

 

DEQ contacts:

 

Fred K. Cunningham, Director

Office of Water Permits & Compliance Assistance

Virginia Department of Environmental Quality

phone: 804.698.4285

e-mail: Frederick.Cunningham@deq.virginia.gov

 

William K. Norris, Environmental Specialist II

Guidance & Regulation Coordinator - Senior

Office of Regulatory Affairs

Virginia Department of Environmental Quality

phone: 804.698.4022

e-mail: william.norris@deq.virginia.gov

 


To follow the status of the  General Virginia Pollutant Discharge Elimination System / Permit for Pesticide Discharges [9 VAC  2 5 - 8 0 0 ], visit this section of the Virginia Regulatory Town Hall website:

 http://www.townhall.state.va.us/L/ViewAction.cfm?actionid=3261

 


To track the NPDES, refer to this section of EPA's website:

  http://cfpub.epa.gov/npdes/home.cfm?program_id=410

 


Updated on April 14, 2011
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Fertilizer Certification

Online Fertilizer Applicator Certification Training

 

Virginia Cooperative Extension offers a free online training and testing program (Fertilizer Applicator Certification Training, FACT)

Upon successful completion of this online training program, users meet the requirements of becoming a Virginia Certified Fertilizer Applicator as administered through the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS). The link to the FACT website is http://www.ext.vt.edu/fact and complete instructions on how to access the system, enroll in the training, complete the training and testing, and contact information for any questions are provided.

 
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