Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Regulation of Pesticide Discharges Under NPDES Permit - New Court Ruling

On January 7, 2009, an Appeals Court vacated a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rule that has allowed pesticides to be applied to U.S. waters without a Clean Water Act permit. In November 2007, EPA had issued the final rule stating that pesticides applied in accordance with the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) are exempt from the Clean Water Act's permitting requirements.

The Clean Water Act regulates the discharge of pollutants into the nation's waters by, among other things, requiring entities that discharge pollutants to obtain a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit. For nearly 30 years before adoption of the 2007 rule, pesticide labels issued under the FIFRA were required to contain a notice stating that the pesticide could not be "discharged into lakes, streams, ponds, or public waters unless in accordance with an NPDES permit".

The court ruled that pesticide residues and biological pesticides constitute pollutants under federal law and therefore must be regulated under the Clean Water Act in order to minimize the impact to human health and the environment.

Caltha LLP assists dischargers in meeting State and Federal requirements for stormwater and wastewater discharge. Caltha also provides specialized expertise in the assessment, standards and regulation of pesticides and herbicides in the environment.

For further information contact Caltha LLP at
Caltha LLP Website

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