Wisconsin Pest Control Pollutant Discharge Permits
Wisconsin General Permits are available for pest control treatment projects that have a pollutant discharge to a water of the state. The four Wisconsin WPDES general permits listed below were first issued in October 2011 and reissued effective April 2018. These Clean Water Act permits are needed to comply with the federal 6th Circuit Court of Appeals Cotton Council decision .
Waters of the State
Section. 283.01(20), Wis. Stats., has a specific definition for a water of the state. Any wet area below the ordinary high water mark of a surface water (marsh, creek, stream, river, pond, lake, etc.) is considered to be a water of the state. A wet area with wetland vegetation would normally be considered to be a water of the state. Also, water in channels and tributaries that drains to wetlands or surface waters is included in the waters of the state definition. Water in ponds, depressions or ditches that is entirely confined and retained completely on the private property of a person is not considered to be a WPDES water of the state.
The general WPDES permits authorize a pollutant discharge from control activities for the following types of organisms:
- Aquatic Plants, Algae and Pathogens - Permit No. WI-0064556-2-1
- Detrimental or Invasive Aquatic Animals - Permit No. WI-0064564-2
- Forest Canopy Pests - Permit No. WI-0064572-2
- Mosquitoes or Other Flying Insects - Permit No. WI-0064581-2
Description of a Pest Control Pollutant Discharge
A pest control pollutant discharge would occur when a point source (spray nozzle, granular spreader or mixer, etc.) causes:
- a biological pollutant discharge to a water of the state;
- a chemical residual in a water of the state after the treatment project is completed; or
- a chemical concentration in a water of the state located beyond the pest treatment area boundary.
General Permit Goals
The goal of these general permits is that the permittee evaluate and implement integrated pest management practices that, in conjunction with effective pest control, will minimize any pest control pollutant discharge and prevent exceedence of a Wisconsin water quality standard.
Applying For Coverage
There are two ways to apply for coverage under one of the WPDES general permits for pesticide pollutant discharges:
- Apply for both the NR 107 Aquatic Plant Management Permit and one of the WPDES General Permits by submitting an electronic Chemical Control Application. The electronic Chemical Control Application is available on the ePermitting System by logging in through the Water Permit Applications webpage; or
- Submit an electronic Notice of Intent (eNOI) to obtain coverage under one of the WPDES general permits. The eNOI is available on the ePermitting System by logging in through the Water Permit Applications webpage. An applicator may apply for statewide/blanket coverage to have pesticide pollutant discharges at any treatment sites across Wisconsin covered under a single application.
Only one entity needs to have WPDES permit coverage for any pesticide pollutant discharge to a water of the state. That entity can be either the sponsor or the applicator. If the pesticide contract applicator does not have permit coverage, the sponsor would need to apply for WPDES permit coverage for any pesticide pollutant discharge to a water of the state (residue or discharge beyond the treatment area).
Coverage is for the term of the general permit unless otherwise requested by the permittee if applying during the permit term.
For more information on Aquatic Plant Management Permits and Treatment Records, please see the Aquatic Plant Management webpage.
Permit Fees and Annual Reporting Requirements
Coverage under these general WPDES permits currently has no fee.
See each general permit document for reporting requirements.