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Commercial Agriculture Regulatory Program

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PROGRAM OVERVIEW

Since the 1980s, the San Diego Water Board has regulated discharges from agricultural and nursery operations (Agricultural Operations) within its jurisdictional boundaries by requiring the implementation of management measures and/or best management practices to prevent or minimize the discharge of pollutants that may adversely impact the quality or beneficial uses of the waters of the State.

In 1983, the San Diego Water Board adopted Conditional Waiver No. 18 (1983 Waiver), which waived the requirement to submit a Report of Waste Discharge, provided that Agricultural Operations implement effective management practices to control irrigation return flow. In 2007, the San Diego Water Board adopted a Basin Plan Amendment (R9-2007-0104) which included the Conditional Waiver of Waste Discharge Requirements for Discharges from Agricultural and Nursery Operations (2007 Waiver). The 2007 Waiver required Agricultural Operations to implement effective management practices to minimize or eliminate the discharge of pollutants that may adversely impact the beneficial uses of waters of the State, conduct routine monitoring and reporting activities, and complete yearly water quality management training. The 2007 Waiver expired in February 2014.

In 2016, the San Diego Water Board adopted Order No. R9-2016-0004, General Waste Discharge Requirements for Discharges from Commercial Agricultural Operations for Dischargers that are Members of a Third-Party Group in the San Diego Region (Third-Party General Order), and Order No. R9-2016-2005, General Waste Discharge Requirements for Discharges from Commercial Agricultural Operations for Dischargers Not Participating in a Third-Party Group in the San Diego Region (Individual General Order). Collectively, the Third-Party General Order and the Individual General Order are referred to as the General Agricultural Orders. The General Agricultural Orders requires Agricultural Operations to implement effective management practices to minimize or eliminate the discharge of pollutants that may adversely impact the beneficial uses of waters of the State, conduct routine monitoring and reporting activities, complete yearly water quality management training, and prepare and implement Water Quality Protection Plans and Water Quality Restoration Plans. The Third-Party General Order also includes requirements for approved Third-Party Groups.

To receive program updates by email, please subscribe to the Agriculture and Nurseries email list.

For additional information please contact Mr. Barry Pulver at (619) 521-3381 or Barry.Pulver@waterboards.ca.gov.