OLYMPIA, Wash. - The state Department of Ecology (Ecology) invites public comments on proposed modifications to the Aquatic Plant and Algae Management General Permit.
Licensed applicators and other authorized entities must have coverage under the permit to use products to control aquatic plants and algae in fresh waters. The permit also covers treatment of nuisance emergent plants along roadsides and ditch banks.
The permit modifications would allow the use of four additional U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-approved, reduced-risk herbicides. In addition, Ecology developed an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) on the chemicals, also verifying the reduced risk of the products. This EIS can be found on Ecology's website (http://www.ecy.wa.gov/biblio/0010040Addendum1.html).
Another permit modification Ecology proposes would add flexibility about timing of treatments to protect fish.
The proposed modifications are posted on Ecology's website. (www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/wq/pes ... c_plant_permit_index.html)
Ecology will accept electronic and hard copy comments on the permit modifications through 5 p.m. March 7, 2012. Ecology prefers comments be submitted by email for efficiency in receiving and reviewing comments.
Emailed comments must contain the commenter's name and postal address. Comments should reference the specific modification when possible. Email comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Written comments must be postmarked no later than 5 p.m. March 7, 2012. Mail comments to Kathy Hamel, Washington State Department of Ecology, P.O. Box 47600, Olympia, WA 98504-7600.
Ecology will hold a public workshop and hearing on the changes at 1 p.m. Monday, March 5 at Lacey Timberland Library, 500 College St. SE.
For more information about the permit, contact Kathy Hamel at email@example.com or 360-407-6562.
In March 2011, Ecology updated the permit to reflect feedback we received from businesses that treat plants and algae, from waterfront residents, and from state and local governments.