The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) recently enacted a general permit for pesticide application, known as the Pesticides General Permit.  A TCEQ permit is required anytime a city (or other person) discharges a biological pesticide or a chemical pesticide that leaves a residue in water when such applications are made into, over, or near waters of the United States. 

The general permit allows a city to seek permission to apply pesticides over water in certain circumstances, rather than having to apply for an individual permit, which can be costly and time-consuming.  Authorization may be obtained under the general permit for limited applications of pesticides to deal with:  (1) mosquitoes and other insects; (2) vegetation and algae; (3) animal pests; (4) area-wide pests; and (5) forest-canopy pests. 

For applications that will cover less than one acre of waters of the United States, a city may not need to apply for coverage at all.  League staff has been following the pesticide general permit process since 2010, and cities were involved in the stakeholder comment process in the creation of the permit. 

For more information on the permit and how it is applied, go to or contact TCEQ staff at 512-239-4671 or

TML member cities may use the material herein for any purpose. No other person or entity may reproduce, duplicate, or distribute any part of this document without the written authorization of the Texas Municipal League.

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