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The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has added a link to a translation service developed by Microsoft Inc., entitled Bing Translator, as a convenience to visitors to the DEC website who speak languages other than English.

Additional information can be found at DEC's Language Assistance Page.

Agricultural Water Withdrawals

For the purposes of the water withdrawal regulations, agricultural facilities include: farming for crops, plants, vines and trees, and the keeping, grazing, or feeding of livestock for sale of livestock or livestock products, and the on-farm processing of crops, livestock and livestock products.

As explained below, depending on several factors, agricultural facilities may be required to register, report on usage, or apply for a water withdrawal permit (groundwater, surface water, or a combination).

Photo of farmland and farm buildings
Photo by Keturah Stickann/John Menier
(from Creative Commons)

Registration of Existing Water Withdrawals

As per §601.17 (Registration of agricultural facilities), registration is required if:

  • a water withdrawal system was being operated for agricultural purposes on February 15, 2012, with a cumulative withdrawal for a single parcel or proximate parcels equal to or in excess of an average of 100,000 gallons per day ("threshold volume") in any thirty day consecutive period (3 million gallons during a 30 day period); AND
  • prior to February 15, 2012 water usage was registered or reported to NYSDEC. (If not already registered or reported by that date, then the facility must acquire a permit.)

Please note that the above threshold definition for agricultural facilities is different from that for non-agricultural facilities. Non-agricultural facility threshold volume is based on capacity per day rather than an agricultural facility's actual withdrawal during a 30 day period.

Annual registrations are due by March 31st of each year. However any agricultural facility with a water source(s) over the threshold volume that did not register or report usage to NYSDEC prior to February 15, 2012 must file for a water withdrawal permit.

Water withdrawal applies to both surface water and groundwater.

Annual Reporting

All agricultural facilities that have withdrawn groundwater or surface water equal to or in excess of an average of 100,000 gallons per day in any thirty day consecutive period (3 million gallons during a 30 day period) must file an Agricultural Water Withdrawal Report with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation on an annual basis.

Annual reports are due by March 31st of each year.

Permits

  • A permit is not necessary for withdrawals for agricultural purposes that were registered or their annual water usage reported prior to February 15, 2012. These existing withdrawals are only subject to the annual reporting and registration requirements.
  • A permit is required for any agricultural facility that did not register or report usage prior to February 15, 2012 and has the capacity to withdraw water equal to or in excess of an average of 100,000 gallons per day in any thirty day consecutive period (3 million gallons during a 30 day period).
  • A permit is required for any exempted or permitted facility planning to increase its taking and meets the threshold volume.
  • Finally, a permit is required for any new facility that meets the threshold volume.

Forms are available online for all permit applications.

Details and further explanations of these topics are contained in the following webpages.


More about Agricultural Water Withdrawals: