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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 9. Environment
Agency 25. State Water Control Board
Chapter 31. Virginia Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (VPDES) Permit Regulation
1/29/2020

9VAC25-31-505. Universal Requirements for Land Application Operations.

Article 2
Biosolids Applied to the Land

A. A nutrient management plan prepared by a person who is certified as a nutrient management planner by the Department of Conservation and Recreation shall be developed for all application sites prior to biosolids land application.

1. A nutrient management plan approved by the Department of Conservation and Recreation shall be required for application sites prior to board authorization under specific conditions, including but not limited to:

a. Sites operated by an owner or lessee of a confined animal feeding operation, as defined in subsection A of § 62.1-44.17:1 of the Code of Virginia, or confined poultry feeding operation, as defined in subsection A of § 62.1-44.17:1.1 of the Code of Virginia;

b. Sites where land application more frequently than once every three years at greater than 50% of the annual agronomic rate is proposed;

c. Mined or disturbed land sites where land application is proposed at greater than agronomic rates; and

d. Other sites based on site-specific conditions that increase the risk that land application may adversely impact state waters.

e. Where conditions at the land application site change so that it meets one or more of the specific conditions identified in this section, an approved nutrient management plan shall be submitted prior to any future land application at the site.

2. The nutrient management plan shall be available for review by the department at the land application site during biosolids land application.

3. Within 30 days after land application at the site has commenced, the permit holder shall provide a copy of the nutrient management plan to the farm operator of the site, the Department of Conservation and Recreation, and the chief executive officer or designee for the local government unless they request in writing not to receive the nutrient management plan.

4. The nutrient management plan must be approved by the Department of Conservation and Recreation prior to land application for land application sites where the soil test phosphorus levels exceed the values in Table 1 of this section. For purposes of approval, permittees should submit the nutrient management plan to the Department of Conservation and Recreation at least 30 days prior to the anticipated date of land application to ensure adequate time for the approval process.

TABLE 1

SOIL PHOSPHORUS LEVELS REQUIRING NMP APPROVAL

Region

Soil Test P (ppm)

VPI & SU Test (Mehlich I)*

Eastern Shore and Lower Coastal Plain

135

Middle and Upper Coastal Plain and Piedmont

136

Ridge and Valley

162

*If results are from another laboratory, the Department of Conservation and Recreation approved conversion factors must be used.

B. Sewage sludge shall be treated to meet standards for land application of biosolids as required by Part VI (9VAC25-31-420 et seq.) of this chapter prior to delivery at the land application site. No person shall alter the composition of biosolids at a site approved for land application of biosolids under a VPDES permit. Any person who engages in the alteration of such biosolids shall be subject to the penalties provided in Article 6 (§ 62.1-44.31 et seq.) of Chapter 3.1 of Title 62.1 of the Code of Virginia. The addition of lime or deodorants to biosolids that have been treated to meet standards for land application as required by Part VI (9VAC25-31-420 et seq.) of this chapter, shall not constitute alteration of the composition of biosolids. The board may authorize public institutions of higher education to conduct scientific research on the composition of biosolids that may be applied to land.

C. Bulk biosolids meeting Class B pathogen reduction standards shall be land applied in accordance with the Virginia Pollution Abatement Permit Regulation, Article 3, Biosolids Use Standards and Practices, set forth in 9VAC25-32-490 through 9VAC25-32-580.

D. Surface incorporation may be required on cropland by the department, or the local monitor with approval of the department, to mitigate malodors, when incorporation is practicable and compatible with a soil conservation plan or contract meeting the standards and specifications of the U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service.

E. For applications where surface applied biosolids are not incorporated, the department (or the local monitor with approval of the department) may require as a site-specific permit condition, extended setback distances when necessary to protect odor sensitive receptors.

F. No person shall apply to the Department of Environmental Quality for a permit, a variance, or a permit modification authorizing storage of sewage sludge or biosolids without first complying with all requirements adopted pursuant to § 62.1-44.19:3 R of the Code of Virginia.

Statutory Authority

§ 62.1-44.15 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Volume 24, Issue 06, eff. January 1, 2008; amended, Virginia Register Volume 29, Issue 24, eff. September 1, 2013.

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