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NCFS-Home >> Water Quality >> Beginning Steps: Regulations

Regulations

There are numerous rules and regulations that govern how forestry operations must be done in order to protect the quality of our water resources. These regulations come from both the state and federal government, and cover a wide array of topics that are related to forestry. In some cases, the rules apply across the entire state of North Carolina. In other cases, there are regulations that only apply to specific locations.

Additionally, there are situations in which a federal or state regulatory agency has developed written guidance on how to interpret a specific regulation for practical application. These guidance documents, while not technically considered laws, should be carefully considered if you want to undertake the activity that is being discussed.

The information below is not a complete listing of all possible applicable regulations. You should seek assistance from a consulting forester, the N.C. Forest Service, or other natural resources professionals to obtain further advice if you have questions, and you should stay up-to-date on changes to these regulations or the establishment of new laws.

These regulations are explained in further detail within the North Carolina Forestry Best Management Practices Manual to Protect Water Quality.

Name: Forest Practices Guidelines Related to Water Quality
Where it applies: Statewide
Source: State
Reference: Administrative Code 02 NCAC 60C.0100 - .0209
Forestry effects: All forestry-related, site-disturbing activities must comply with the 9 performance standards defined within the FPG's if they wish to remain exempt from the additional requirements of the SPCA.
 
Name: Sedimentation Pollution Control Act of 1973
Where it applies: Statewide
Source: State
Reference: N.C. General Statutes: Article 4, Ch. 113A
Forestry effects: Can effect all forestry-related, site-disturbing activities. The FPG's and the so-called 'forestry exemption' are defined within this law.
 
Name: Obstructing Streams a Misdemeanor
Where it applies: Statewide
Source: State
Reference: N.C. General Statute 77-13
Forestry effects: This law describes restrictions on obstructing designated waterways.
 
Name: Obstructions in Streams and Drainage Ditches
Where it applies: Statewide
Source: State
Reference: N.C. General Statute 77-14
Forestry effects: This law describes restrictions on obstructing designated waterways.
 
Name: Neuse River Basin Riparian Buffer Rule
Where it applies: Drainage system within the Neuse River basin
Source: State
Reference: Administrative Code 15A NCAC 02B .0233
Forestry effects: Limitations on forestry activities within the designated 50-foot wide riparian buffer zone.
 
Name: Tar-Pamlico River Basin Riparian Buffer Rule
Where it applies: Drainage system within the Tar-Pamlico River basin
Source: State
Reference: Administrative Code 15A NCAC 02B .0259
Forestry effects: Limitations on forestry activities within the designated 50-foot wide riparian buffer zone.
 
Name: Catawba River and Mainstem Lakes Riparian Buffer Rule
Where it applies: Catawba River and alongside mainstem lakes of the river
Source: State
Reference: Administrative Code 15A NCAC 02B .0243
Forestry effects: Limitations on forestry activities within the designated 50-foot wide riparian buffer zone.
 
Name: Randleman Lake Watershed Riparian Buffer Rule
Where it applies: Watershed drainage area of the Randleman Lake/Resevoir
Source: State
Reference: Administrative Code 15A NCAC 02B .0250
Forestry effects: Limitations on forestry activities within the designated 50-foot wide riparian buffer zone.
 
Name: North Carolina Coastal Area Management Act (CAMA)
Where it applies: In the 20 coastal zone counties
Source: State
Reference: North Carolina General Statutes Ch. 113A; 103(5)b.4
Forestry effects: A permit may be needed for forestry-related activities that involve excavation or filling of certain types of wetlands, as defined within the law.
 
Name: North Carolina Dredge and Fill Law
Where it applies: Specific wetland types of bodies of water as defined in the law
Source: State
Reference: North Carolina General Statutes Ch. 113-229
Forestry effects: A permit may be needed for forestry-related activities that involve excavation or filling of certain types of wetlands, as defined within the law.
 
Name: Fifteen Required Practices for Forest Roads in Wetlands
Where it applies: Wetlands
Source: Federal
Reference: 33 CFR Part 323.4 - Discharges Not Requiring Permits
Forestry effects: These 15 practices are required in order to remain exempt from having to obtain a federal Section 404 permit for forest roads in wetlands.
 
Name: Memorandum to the field Related to the Silviculture Exemption
Where it applies: Wetlands
Source: Federal
Reference: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Forestry effects: This memo describes six required practices for mechanical silvicultural site prep activities that are undertaken for establishment of pine plantations in the southeast. This memo also outlines those situations in which a federal section 404 permit is required to undertake these same types of activities.
 
Name: Information Regarding Compliance with the Federal Clean Water Act
Where it applies: Wetlands
Source: Federal
Reference: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Wilmington District, Regulatory Division
Forestry effects: This document contains specific guidance for forest roads in wetlands.
 
Name: Act to Clarify the Role of Counties and Cities in Regulating Certain Forestry Activities
Where it applies: Statewide
Source: State
Reference: North Carolina General Statutes Ch. 153A-452
Forestry effects: Clarifies the role of counties and cities in regulating certain forestry activities; also known as the "Right to practice forestry bill".
 
Name: Goose Creek Watershed Riparian Buffer Rule
Where it applies: Watershed drainage area of Goose Creek in Mecklenburg and Union counties
Source: State
Reference: Administrative Code 15A 02B .0600-.0609
Forestry effects: Limitations on forestry activities within either a 100-foot or 200-foot wide riparian buffer zone, depending upon location within the floodplain.
 
Name: Jordan Lake Watershed Riparian Buffer Rule
Where it applies: Watershed drainage area of Jordan Lake
Source: State
Reference: Administrative Code 15A NCAC 02B .0267
Forestry effects: Limitations on forestry activities within the designated 50-foot wide riparian buffer zone.
 
Name: Exemption from Temporary Driveway Permitting for Forestry Operations
Where it applies: Statewide
Source: State
Reference: North Carolina General Statutes Ch. 136-92.1
Forestry effects: Exempts forestry and silviculture operations from the requirements of the temporary driveway permit process of the Department for State Roads as long as the outlined conditions are met.
 
Name: Oil Pollution and Hazardous Substances Control Act of 1978
Where it applies: Statewide
Source: State
Reference: N.C. General Statutes Ch. 143-215.75 et seq.
Forestry effects: Outlines the general expected response for a person that owns or has control over petroleum that is discharged into the environment. Specifically, N.C. General Statute Chapter 143-215.85(b) details the expected reporting requirements to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, based on several criteria.
 
 
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This page updated: Wednesday, June 8, 2016 8:51