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Irrigated Lands Regulatory Program (ILRP)


Requirement for Water Quality Education

The ILRP was initiated to prevent agricultural runoff from impairing surface waters, and later included the addition of groundwater regulations. Runoff from irrigated lands can contain pollutants, such as pesticides, fertilizers, salts, and sediment, which can harm aquatic life or make water unusable for drinking water or agricultural uses. Waste discharge requirements (WDRs) address irrigated agricultural discharges to protect water quality.

The Central Valley Water Board adopted waste discharge requirements (WDRs) for discharges from irrigated lands to protect both surface and groundwater. The ILRP regulates such discharges within the jurisdiction of the Central Valley Water Board, which extends from the Oregon border south to the northernmost tip of Los Angeles County.

Waste Discharge Order for Sacramento River Watershed adopted 2/23/2023 https://www.waterboards.ca.gov/centralvalley/board...

Apply for Regulatory Coverage Under the ILRP

All commercial irrigated lands, including nurseries, are required to obtain regulatory coverage. Coverage is not required if a property is not used for commercial purposes, is not irrigated (dryland farmed), or if commercial irrigated lands are covered under another program (i.e., Dairy, Poultry, or Bovine). Options for regulatory coverage include joining a Third-Party (coalition) group or obtaining Individual Regulatory Coverage.

Failure to obtain regulatory coverage may result in the Central Valley Water Board assessing an administrative civil liability (ACL) against you. ACLs can run as high as $1,000 per day for every day of violation. ILRP staff is available to assist you in obtaining the proper regulatory coverage.

  • Coalition Groups - for growers obtaining coverage under the general WDRs
    Coalitions work with their members to assist in complying with requirements by conducting monitoring, and preparing and filing plans and reports to address water quality problems
  • Individual Regulatory Coverage – for growers NOT participating in a coalition group
    Growers take it upon themselves to conduct their own monitoring and reporting, and they work directly with the Central Valley Water Board to address water quality problems.

Irrigated Lands Regulatory Program FAQ

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