Organic Growers Must Enroll in the Irrigated Lands Program

All farming operations, including those that are certified organic, that are producing commercial crops on irrigated land on California’s central coast must enroll in the Central Coast Irrigated Lands Regulatory Program and comply with the Agricultural Order requirements.

Fines of up to $1,000 per day may be assessed on operations who fail to enroll. Operations that have been notified they must enroll and fail to do so are most at risk of being fined.

To find out which of the nine regional water quality control boards in which your operation is located, please navigate to this map and type in your address. For those located in the jurisdiction of the Central Coast Irrigated Lands Regulatory Program (or Central Coast Region), the Agricultural Order regulates:

  1. Discharges of waste from irrigated lands including, but not limited to, land planted to row, vineyard, field, and tree crops where water is applied for producing commercial crops;
  2. Discharges of waste from commercial nurseries, nursery stock production, and greenhouse operations with soil floors that do not have point-source type discharges and are not currently operating under individual Waste Discharge Permits; and
  3. Discharges of waste from lands that are planted to commercial crops that are not yet marketable, such as vineyards and tree crops.

Operators must ensure that all irrigated commercial crops are enrolled in the program by submitting information to the State Geotracker database. To enroll in the Central Coast Irrigated Lands Regulatory Program, please click here and select “new eNOI users” if you have not enrolled already. If you are not already enrolled and are growing irrigated crops for sale, you must do so immediately.

You can also view a CCOF webinar about the Irrigated Lands registration requirements.

For more information, and to ask questions regarding enrollment and reporting requirements, please contact the Central Coast Water Board staff:

  • Pajaro River Watershed, San Benito, Santa Cruz, Santa Clara Counties:
    Corinne Huckaby, (805) 549-3504
  • Salinas River Watershed, Monterey County:
    Arwen Wyatt-Mair, (805) 542-4695
  • Santa Maria Watershed, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties:
    Monica Barricarte, (805) 549-3881

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This article was submitted by Monica Barricarte, Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board.

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