Who Needs to Apply for Pesticide Applicator Certification in Indian Country under the EPA Plan
- Who needs to apply for Federal Certification under the EPA Plan?
- Who does not need to apply for Federal Certification under the EPA Plan?
- Direct supervision
- Clarifying questionsExit
Private and commercial applicators who use restricted use pesticides (RUPs) in an area of Indian country covered by the 2014 EPA Plan or those who will be covered by the revised EPA Plan will need a federal certificate from EPA.
A private applicator is a certified applicator who uses or supervises the use of RUPs for the purposes of producing any agricultural commodity:
- On property owned or rented by the applicator or the applicator’s employer; or
- On the property of another person if applied without compensation other than trading of personal services between producers of agricultural commodities.
A commercial applicator is a certified applicator who uses or supervises the use of RUPs:
- For hire;
- On property that does not fall under the definition of a private applicator; or
- While working for a government agency
Certified applicators and noncertified applicators under the direct supervision of certified applicators should be aware that there are several tribes that have their own certification plans and are not covered by the 2014 EPA Plan.
The following types of applicators do NOT need to get certified under the EPA Plan:
- Noncertified applicators applying under the direct supervision of a federally certified applicator (certified under the EPA Plan), as long as the certified applicator is providing direct supervision as described in 40 CFR § 171.201. See below for more information about direct supervision;
- Fertilizer applicators; and
- Pesticide applicators who are not applying RUPs in Indian country. Please note that tribes may have tribal codes, laws, regulations, or other applicable requirements about pesticide use. EPA strongly recommends pesticide applicators contact the tribe before using any pesticides in Indian country.
The EPA Plan allows for noncertified applicators to apply RUPs under the direct supervision of a certified applicator. The certified applicator is ultimately responsible for the application.
Under 40 CFR § 171.201, certified applicators whose activities indicate a supervisory role must have a practical knowledge of applicable federal, state, and tribal supervisory requirements, including any requirements on the product label and labeling, regarding the use of RUPs by noncertified applicators. The certified applicator must be certified in each category as set forth in § § 171.101 and 171.105(a) through (f) applicable to the supervised pesticide use.
The certified applicator must ensure that each noncertified applicator using a RUP under his or her direct supervision meets all of the following requirements before using a RUP:
- The noncertified applicator has met at least one of the following qualifications:
- Trained in accordance with a noncertified applicator training program.
- Trained as an agricultural handler under 40 CFR 170.501 within the last 12 months.
- Has met the requirements established by a certifying authority that meet or exceed the standards in 171.201(c)(1).
- Is currently a certified applicator but is not certified to perform the type of application being conducted or is not certified in the jurisdiction where the use will take place.
- The noncertified applicator has been instructed within the last 12 months in the safe operation of any equipment he or she will use for mixing, loading, transferring, or applying pesticides.
- The noncertified applicator is at least 18 years old, except that a noncertified applicator must be at least 16 years old if all of the following are met:
- The noncertified applicator is using the RUP under the direct supervision of a private applicator who is an immediate family member.
- The RUP is not a fumigant, sodium cyanide, or sodium fluoroacetate.
- The noncertified applicator is not applying the RUP aerially.
Use-specific conditions must be met in order for a noncertified applicator to use a RUP. The certified applicator must:
- Ensure the noncertified applicator has access to the applicable product labeling at all times during its use.
- Ensure the noncertified applicator has clean, labeling-required personal protective equipment and that it worn and used correctly.
- Provide site-specific instructions and the pesticide used.
- Ensure that equipment is in proper operating condition before each day of use and the equipment can be used without risk of reasonably foreseeable adverse effects to the noncertified applicator, other persons, or the environment.
- Ensure immediate communication with the certified applicator is available to each noncertified applicator.
- Be physically present at the site of the use being supervised when required by the product labeling.
- Create or verify the existence of the records required by 40 CFR § 171.201(e) if the certified applicator is a commercial applicator.
- Does the certified applicator need to remain on site if providing direct supervision of an application?
The certified applicator must be present at the site of the use when required by the product labeling. If not required by the product labeling, the certified applicator is not required to be present at the site of the use; however, the certified applicator must ensure that each noncertified applicator under his or her direct supervision can immediately communicate with the certified applicator, and must ensure all requirements listed at 40 CFR § 171.201 are met.
- Who determines if a noncertified applicator is properly qualified to perform functions associated with a pesticide application?
The certified applicator is responsible for ensuring that each noncertified applicator using RUPs under his or her supervision meets all of the qualification requirements of 40 CFR § 171.201(b)(2) and (c). Failure to do so would be a violation of FIFRA.
- How do I apply for a federal certification to use RUPs in Indian country under the EPA Plan?