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Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFO) Water Quality General Permit

Requirements and options for the treatment and discharge of process water, storm water, or both from operations that qualify for coverage under General Permit TXG920000.

CAFO Water Quality General Permit

The CAFO General Permit, Permit No. TXG920000 was re-issued on July 20, 2019. The permit provides coverage for both TPDES large and State-only CAFOs. TPDES large CAFOs are CAFO facilities that meet the head count for a large CAFO under the definition in the permit. State-only CAFOs are dairy CAFO facilities that meet the headcount for a medium CAFO and are located in certain counties of the state. State-only CAFOs also include animal feeding operations that are designated by the Executive Director as a CAFO because they are a significant contributor of pollutants into water in the state.

Manure, sludge, and wastewater generated by a CAFO shall be retained and used in an appropriate and beneficial manner as provided in this general permit.

Unless otherwise limited, manure, sludge, or wastewater may be discharged from a LMU or a retention control structure (RCS) into or adjacent to water in the state from a CAFO authorized under this general permit resulting from any of the following conditions:

  • a discharge of manure, sludge, or wastewater that the permittee cannot reasonably prevent or control resulting from a catastrophic condition other than a rainfall event;
  • overflow of manure, sludge, or wastewater from a RCS resulting from a chronic/catastrophic rainfall event; or
  • a chronic/catastrophic rainfall discharge from a LMU that occurs because the permittee takes measures to de-water the RCS in accordance with Part III.A.10(b), relating to imminent overflow.

There shall be no discharge of wastewater from the production area into surface water in the state from new source poultry, swine, or veal CAFOs. Wastewater must be contained in RCSs properly designed, constructed, operated and maintained according to the provisions of this general permit.

For specific information on the permit requirements, please refer to the following documents:

Forms:

Individual Permit Criteria

If any of the following statements are true you must obtain coverage under an individual permit:

  • Your CAFO is within one mile of coastal natural resource areas.
  • Your CAFO is a dairy CAFO and in Segment 1226 or 1255 of the Bosque River watershed (which are a major sole-source impairment zone).
  • Your CAFO is, or will be, in the protection zone of a sole-source surface drinking water supply Adobe Acrobat PDF Document.
  • Your CAFO is in an impaired watershed where the total maximum daily load (TMDL) plan requires water quality protection measures more stringent than those required by this general permit.
  • Your CAFO is required by our executive director to obtain and operate under an individual permit.
  • Your CAFO has a compliance history rating of “poor.” (See Compliance History.)

If your CAFO qualifies for coverage under this general permit, the steps to follow depend on the status of your facility.

New, Renewing or Expanding?

  • New – a proposed CAFO facility that has not been constructed or an animal feeding operation (AFO) that expands to become a CAFO applying for coverage under the general permit
  • Renewing CAFO – an existing facility previously authorized under an individual permit, or the CAFO general permit, and applying for coverage under the general permit
  • Significant Expansion – an existing facility currently authorized under the general permit, proposing to increase manure production by more than 50 percent, above the maximum operating capacity stated in the initial authorization for the facility under TXG920000.
  • Substantial Change – an existing large CAFO facility currently authorized under the general permit, proposing to apply for a substantial change as defined in the GP, to the terms of the nutrient management plan that was previously approved for the facility.

Getting A Permit

New CAFO: Obtaining Coverage Under General Permit TXG920000
Steps to qualify and apply for coverage for a new CAFO under this water quality general permit.

Existing CAFO: Obtaining Coverage Under General Permit TXG920000
Steps to qualify and apply for renewal of an existing CAFO under this water quality general permit.

Substantial Change to a CAFO: Obtaining Coverage Under General Permit TXG920000
How to apply for coverage for a Substantial Change on a CAFO under Texas water quality General Permit TXG920000.

Expanded CAFO: Obtaining Coverage Under General Permit TXG920000
How to apply for coverage for a significantly expanded CAFO under Texas water quality General Permit TXG920000.

Water Quality General Permit for Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations: Do I Qualify?
CAFO definitions, coverage limitations, authorization process for CAFO general permits.