Current Press Releases

Mar 09, 2012


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Christine Weaver
Permitting and Compliance


DEQ Discharge Permit Needed Before Applying Pesticides to State Water


Helena -- The Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) recently announced a new wastewater permitting program that regulates application of pesticide to surface waters in the state. The new program was developed in conjunction with a federal initiative by the EPA to satisfy a January 2009 federal court decision.
The PGP program replaces the DEQ’s existing 308 Authorization program that required submittal of applications and fees annually with a streamlined Notice of Intent program renewable on a five-year basis. This will result in less paperwork and lower fees for pesticide applicators subject to the rule.
This is the first year that coverage under the new DEQ Pesticide General Permit (PGP) is required for anyone who applies pesticides into or over state surface water. Anyone, from an individual homeowner to a federal agency, with responsibility for pesticide application to or over surface water bodies is subject to this requirement. The application of pesticides to surface water located within the boundaries of an Indian Reservation is regulated by the EPA.
Surface water bodies include streams, rivers, ponds, lakes, wetlands attached to other water bodies, irrigation canals, and other surface waters. Permit coverage is not required for pesticides that reach surface waters only through storm water discharge or for irrigation waters that are used up and will not return to other state waters.
The PGP is not a pesticide permit. It is a wastewater discharge permit regulated by the DEQ. Discharge of pollutants to state water without a permit is a violation of the Montana Water Quality Act. The Montana Department of Agriculture maintains responsibility for all other pesticide certification, licensing, aquatic weed management plans, and pesticide enforcement and compliance considerations.
For complete information about the PGP permit contact the DEQ’s Water Protection Bureau at 406-444-3080 or visit the DEQ website at

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