N.C. SEDIMENTATION POLLUTION CONTROL ACT

Legislative action in 1989 regulated land-disturbing forestry activities under the Sedimentation Pollution Control Act (SPCA). Regulations adopted to address these activities are found in 15A NCAC 1J .0201-.0209). These specific requirements are called the Forest Practice Guidelines to Protect Water Quality. The SPCA requires forestry activities to either comply with the Forest Practice Guidelines or obtain an approved sedimentation control plan from the state.

The Forest Practice Guidelines and the Best Management Practices manuals can be found by clicking here.

Below are the specific performance standards. These are performance oriented rather than prescriptive. The state Best Management Practices Manual identifies specific practices that may be used to comply with these standards. However, the manual itself is not a rule, and the specific practices are not mandatory.

.0201 STREAMSIDE MANAGEMENT ZONE

    1. A streamside management zone (SMZ) shall be established and maintained along the margins of intermittent and perennial streams and perennial waterbodies. The SMZ shall be of sufficient width to confine within the SMZ visible sediment resulting from accelerated erosion.
    2. Ground cover, or other means, within the SMZ shall be sufficient to restrain accelerated erosion.
    3. Access roads and skid trials, except as provided in >0203 of this subchapter, logging decks and mill sites shall be placed outside of SMZs. When barriers such as property lines or limiting land features prohibit the location of any of these outside of SMZs, they can be located within the SMZ. When located within the SMZs, they shall have effective erosion control and sediment control structures on measures installed to restrain accelerated erosion and prevent visible sediment from entering intermittent or perennial waterbodies.

.0202 PROHIBITION OF DEBRIS ENTERING STREAMS AND WATERBODIES

Stream obstruction and the impediment of stream flow an/or degradation of water quality shall be prevented by keeping debris from construction, harvesting, mill sites residue and site preparation out of intermittent and perennial streams an perennial waterbodies.

.0203 ACCESS ROAD AND SKID TRIAL STREAM CROSSINGS

Stream crossings shall be avoided when possible. Access roads and skid trails which must cross intermittent or perennial streams or perennial waterbodies shall be constructed so as to minimize the amount of sediment that enters the streams because of the construction. These crossings shall be installed so that:

    1. stream flow will not be obstructed or impeded;
    2. no stream channel or perennial waterbody shall be used as an access road or skid trial;
    3. crossings are provided with effective structures or ground cover to protect the banks and channel from accelerated erosion;
    4. they shall have sufficient water control devices to collect and divert surface flow from the access road or skid trail into undisturbed areas or other control structures to restrain accelerated erosion and prevent visible sediment from entering intermittent and perennial streams; and
    5. ground cover, or other means, sufficient to prevent visible sediment from entering intermittent and perennial streams and perennial waterbodies shall be provided within 10 working days on initial disturbance and will be maintained until the site is permanently stabilized.

.0204 ACCESS ROAD ENTRANCES

Access road entrances intersecting public highways shall be constructed and maintained with measures, devices or techniques effective to prevent excessive soil and other debris from being carried to and deposited on the highway to the extent that sedimentation problems will result.

.0205 PROHIBITION OF WASTE ENTERING STREAMS, WATERBODIES AND GROUNDWATER

Measures shall be taken to prevent equipment servicing waste, petroleum, fertilizers or other chemical waste from entering streams, perennial waterbodies, and groundwater which result in a violation of an adopted water quality standard of the Environmental Management Commission in Sections 15 NCAC 2L .0200 Classifications and Water Quality Standards Applicable to Surface Waters of North Carolina, and 15 NCAC 2L .0200 Classifications and Water Quality Standards (related to groundwater).

.0206 PESTICIDE APPLICATION

Application of pesticides shall be limited to those labeled for that intended use, shall be used in accordance with labeling and rules adopted by the N.C. Pesticide Board as set forth in 2 NCAC 9L .1005, Restricted Areas, and applied in a manner to prevent adverse impacts on water quality.

.0207 FERTILIZER APPLICATION

When used, fertilizers shall be applied in a manner to prevent adverse impacts on water quality.

.0208 STREAM TEMPERATURE

Adequate shade within SMZs associated with natural perennial streams shall be retained to protect those streams from adverse temperature fluctuations which result in a violation of an adopted water quality standard of the Environmental Management Commission as contained in rule 15 NCAC 2B .0211 Fresh Surface Water Classifications and Standards

.0209 REHABILITATION OF PROJECT SITE

Areas on the project site that have the potential for accelerated erosion, resulting in concentrated flow directly entering an intermittent or perennial stream or other waterbody, shall be provided with ground cover or other means of adequate sedimentation control within 30 working days after ceasing any phase of an operation or beginning a period of inactivity. Treatment and maintenance of those areas shall be sufficient to restrain accelerated erosion and prevent visible sediment from entering intermittent and perennial streams and perennial waterbodies until the site is permanently stabilized.