Applying a pesticide to waters of the United States consistent with relevant requirements of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act may not require a permit under the Clean Water Act, say federal officials.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued an interim guidance July 11, stating no National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit under the clean Water Act is required if two sets of circumstances are met:
EPA plans to solicit comment on this interim statement and guidance through the Federal Register prior to taking a final position. The interim guidance comes partly in response to a ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit that EPA needs to articulate a clear interpretation of when or if National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permits are required for applying pesticides that comply with the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act.
- Applying pesticides directly to waters to control pests such as mosquito larvae or aquatic weeds present in the water.
- Applying pesticides to control pests present over waters of the United States that result in a portion of the pesticide being deposited to water bodies. An example is aerially applying a pesticide to a forest canopy when water may be present below the canopy, or when insecticides are applied for control of adult mosquitoes.
The memorandum stating the interim policy is available on the Internet at www.epa.gov/owm. For more information, contact David Deegan at (202) 564-7839.
Interim Pesticide Statement
Capital Press, July 25, 2003
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