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Rule 1 Agrichemical spray and powder application (land based)

http://www.gw.govt.nz/rule-1-agrichemical-spray-and-powder-application-land-based

Rule 1 Agrichemical spray and powder application (land based)

Updated 3 July 2015 12:59pm

The discharge of contaminants into air in connection with land-based application of agrichemical spray and powder:

(1) where agrichemical sprays are applied with a hand operated, and manually pumped, sprayer with a capacity of 20 litres or less; or where agrichemical powders are applied by hand;

(2) where agrichemical sprays or powders are applied by any means other than that described in (1); and the area to be sprayed or dusted with agrichemical powder is not located within 50 metres of adjacent properties or places of common public assembly;

(3) where agrichemical sprays or powders are applied by any means other than that described in (1); and the area to be sprayed or dusted with agrichemical powder is located within 50 metres of adjacent properties and places of common public assembly; and

(4) in public areas and alongside public roadways using any method of application.

is a Permitted Activity, provided it complies with the relevant conditions below .

Conditons

Activity Conditions

(1) (i) - (vi)

(2) (i) - (vi)

(3) (i) - (viii)

(4) (i) - (vi), (ix) - (xi)

The persons responsible for the activity shall ensure that:

(i) No agrichemicals are sprayed, or applied as powders, on or above surface water bodies, artificial watercourses, a bore, or spring unless they are registered for use over water bodies ( Note: if the discharge is directly into water, a Resource Consent may be required under the Regional Freshwater Plan.).

(ii) Where agrichemical sprays or powders are applied to the dry beds of any surface water bodies or artificial watercourses:

  • only those products registered for use in dry watercourses may be applied; and
  • all practical steps shall be taken to ensure that the appropriate re-entry time is allowed to elapse before water re-enters the watercourse.

(iii) Spray solutions are diluted, and sprays and powders are applied, strictly in accordance with the manufacturers' instructions and at concentrations not exceeding the manufacturers' label recommendations.

(iv) No mixing or diluting of chemicals takes place within 20 metres of a surface water body, a bore, spring, tile drain or the coastal marine area, unless the mixing or diluting takes place on an impervious surface which is bunded to contain washdown water or spillages.

(v) Sprays and powders are applied in a manner which does not cause or is not likely to cause adverse effects beyond the boundary of the property.

(vi) The Wellington Regional Council is notified immediately in the case of accidental discharge into a water body.

Conditions (vii) and (viii) are additional to conditions (i) - (vi) for activity (3)

(vii) Written notice (either direct notification to individual properties or public notification) is given to all adjacent properties or places of common public assembly (e.g., schools, kindergartens, offices, etc.) located within 50 metres of the area to be sprayed or dusted with agrichemical powder.

Such notification is to take place prior to the spraying, not less than once a year, at the beginning of the year or spray season.

Such notification is unnecessary if owners or occupiers of adjacent properties or places of public assembly agree in writing that notification is not required;

Notice must be in the form of a property spray plan and include details of:

(a) the property, or part of property, to be sprayed or dusted with powder;

(b) the periods (likely day(s), date(s) and time(s)) when the agrichemical sprays or powders will be applied;

(c) the crops or vegetation to be sprayed and a list of chemicals (with brand names) to be used;

(d)     any safety precautions for third parties, as noted in the most recent edition of the New Zealand Agrichemical and Plant Protection Manual (WHAM Chemsafe Ltd.);

(e)     a list of immediate neighbours, and their contact phone numbers;

(f)      identification of sensitive areas (e.g., residential buildings, school buildings, amenity areas, public water supply catchments, water bodies, sensitive crops or farming systems, wetlands, public roads) and the strategies employed to avoid contamination of those areas;

(g)     the name and contact phone number of those carrying out the agrichemical application; and

(h)     the equipment and method of application to be used.

(viii)   A spray diary showing how the spray plan was implemented, is maintained, and available for inspection, containing:

  • date and time of spray/powder application;
  • concentration and volume of spray/powder used;
  • weather conditions (including wind speed and direction);
  • how notification requirements have been met; and
  • details of any abnormal situation or incident, and any action taken, including any variations to the spray plan.

Conditions (ix) - (xi) are additional to conditions (i) - (vi) for activity (4)

(ix)     The Principal Contractor shall hold a current [Advanced GROWSAFE Certificate ], and employees shall hold a Standard GROWSAFE Certificate issued by the New Zealand Agrichemical Education Trust.

(x)     Where spraying or the application of powders occurs in a public area other than roads, signs clearly advising that spraying is in progress are placed within the immediate vicinity of the activity immediately prior to commencing spraying, and maintained in place until the re-entry period for that particular chemical, has expired.

(xi)     Where spraying or the application of powders occurs alongside public roads and other public thoroughfares, vehicles associated with the spraying shall display prominent signs (front and back) advising that spraying is in progress.

Explanation:  Rule 1 relates to the spray and powder application of agrichemicals using land-based equipment.  The term "agrichemical" is defined in the Definitions.  It includes all pesticides, insecticides, herbicides, and fungicides, but does not include fertilisers.  This rule only applies to the application of agrichemicals by methods involving spraying or dusting with powders.   The application of agrichemicals by wipers, which do not produce spray droplets and therefore do not affect air quality, are not restricted in this Plan.  Application of agrichemicals to land as solids or pastes (e.g., by baits), the aerial release of bait for the control of vertebrates and the application of agrichemicals in a granule or pellet form is addressed in the Regional Plan for Discharges to Land for the Wellington Region.  Direct application of agrichemicals into water (e.g., by injection) is addressed in the Council's Regional Freshwater Plan.  Application of agrichemical sprays or powders in the coastal marine area is addressed in the Regional Coastal Plan.

Rule 1 relates to all instances where agrichemicals are sprayed or dusted in powder form, including the application of agrichemicals on domestic properties, trade and industrial premises, and in public and rural areas.  The rule is primarily aimed at avoiding or mitigating the adverse effects of agrichemical spray drift on human health and safety and on surface water bodies and their ecosystems.  A core set of conditions applies to all circumstances in which agrichemicals are applied, with additional conditions for application when using the larger methods of application specified and close to other properties, and in public areas.

The application of agrichemical sprays and powders using small scale application methods, other than in public areas is a permitted activity, as long as the stated conditions are complied with.  Any method of application in a public area is in activity (4).  All other applications are in activity (1), (2) or (3). Activity (4) excludes application on road frontage areas where sprays or powders are applied by the residents or owners (or their representatives) of an adjoining property, when using the methods described in (1).

Activity (1) includes road frontage areas where sprays or powders are applied by the residents or owners (or their representatives) of an adjoining property using the above methods, but excludes any other application in public areas or alongside public roadways as addressed in activity (4). 

Public areas include areas to which the public generally have unrestricted access, such as:

  • roadsides and other access ways;
  • public areas administered by local authorities, including car parks, parks, forest reserves, reserves and recreation areas;
  • public areas administered by government departments, including car parks, parks, reserves and recreation areas, and other Crown estate;
  • areas administered by sports clubs (sports fields, golf clubs etc.) or educational institutes (kohanga reo, kindergartens, schools, tertiary education facilities etc.); and
  • areas associated with industrial or trade premises to which the public has unrestricted access.

The application of agrichemical sprays and powders in public areas is permitted, subject to compliance with the stated conditions.  The most important of these conditions is that the Principal Contractor responsible for the activity must hold a Registered Chemical Applicators' GROWSAFE Certificate and all employees spraying in these areas must hold a current Standard GROWSAFE Certificate, issued by the New Zealand Agrichemical Education Trust.  Spraying without the required certificate requires a discretionary resource consent (Rule 23).

Activities (2) and (3) of Rule 1 relate to larger methods of spray application.  This would normally relate to production land and trade and industrial premises (where the public have restricted access) and include the application of agrichemical sprays and powders on agricultural, horticultural, silvicultural, native forest lands and alongside railway tracks.

Rule 1 includes a series of conditions which must be complied with in order for the respective spraying or application of powders to be considered as permitted activities.  This includes the condition that no agrichemical sprays or powders are applied on or above a surface water body or any artificial watercourse unless the agrichemical is registered for use over water bodies.  The rule permits spraying along the banks of water bodies and on the beds of dry water bodies, provided that only agrichemicals registered for that purpose are used, and subject to due regard being taken of the re-entry time for introducing water into channels, as specified by the manufacturer or in the most recent edition of the New Zealand Agrichemical and Plant Protection Manual.  “Re-entry period” is defined in the definitions. 

Rule 1 also requires that spray solutions are diluted and sprays and powders are applied strictly in accordance with the manufacturers’ instructions and at concentrations not exceeding the manufacturers' label recommendations, and that sprays and powders are applied in a manner which does not cause or is not likely to cause adverse effects beyond the boundary of the property.

The rule also requires that the dilution or mixing of agrichemical sprays only takes place at a distance of more than 20 metres from a surface water body, a bore, spring, tile drain or the coastal marine area.  Mixing any closer than 20 metres is permitted so long as it is carried on an impermeable surface which is bunded to contain spillages or washwater, otherwise it is a discretionary activity and requires a discretionary resource consent.

Notification to the Council in the event of the accidental discharge of agrichemical solutions or sprays to water will enable the Council to act quickly to mitigate or remedy the adverse effects caused by such an event.

A significant aspect of the rule is the requirement for public notification when agrichemical sprays and powders are applied using larger scale methods of application close to other properties (condition vii) This condition requires that written notice be given to all adjacent properties or place of common public assembly (schools, halls, sports fields etc.), which is within 50 metres of the area to be sprayed or dusted with powder.  Public notification can either be via direct notice to neighbouring properties as described above, or through public notification in a community, district or national newspaper.  Notification must be given at least once a year, at the start of the year or at the beginning of the spray season.

Public notification is not required when the written agreement of the owner or occupier of an adjacent property has been obtained that states that notification is not required.  In such instances, spraying can be carried out without notification to the adjacent property owner/occupier until such time as the ownership or occupation of the neighbouring property changes, or the notice stating that public notification is not required is rescinded.  It should be noted that notification is not required when the agrichemical spray application takes place with a manually pumped sprayer with a capacity of 20 litres or less, or when agrichemical powders are applied by hand. 

The information required with the notification is outlined in the condition.  The period when the sprays or powders are applied means the general time frame which can be reasonably predicted.  For example, if a horticulturalist wishes to apply agrichemicals within 50 metres of a neighbour's property then the notice to the neighbouring property owner could state that "spraying will be undertaken between 6-10 am on Tuesday 9th, Wednesday 10th, or Thursday 11th of February, depending on weather conditions".  It should be noted that the requirement for notification does not mean that approval is required from those people to whom notification is given.  Failure to provide adequate notification, where required, makes spraying relating to the use of these larger scale methods a discretionary activity. 

Condition (viii) calls for the use of spray diaries, regardless of the type of chemicals being applied in the same situations as spray plans are required.  The relevant data must be entered into the spray diary on each occasion that agrichemicals are sprayed or dusted.  The spray diary may be required for inspection by Council compliance officers. 

Conditions (ix)-(xi) require the provision of signage where agrichemical spraying has occurred or is in progress in public areas.  Signs must be placed in the immediate vicinity of the spraying.  This requirement does not apply to the application of agrichemical sprays and powders on or beside public roads.

Where signs are required they must clearly indicate that spraying is in progress.  The signs must be maintained in place until the re-entry period for the particular chemical has passed.  The re-entry period is the time elapsed until it is safe for humans to enter a sprayed or dusted area with little possibility of suffering any adverse affects from the spraying.  The re-entry times for chemicals are those specified on the product label or in the most recent edition of the New Zealand Agrichemical and Plant Protection Manual.

Where agrichemical spray or powder application occurs alongside public roads and other public thoroughfares, condition (xi) requires that vehicles associated with the spraying must display prominent signs (front and back) clearly indicating that spraying is in progress.