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15.20.12.00.htm 15.20.12.00. Title 15 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Subtitle 20 SOIL AND WATER CONSERVATION Chapter 12 Agricultural Nutrient and Sediment Credit Certification Program Authority: Agriculture Article, §2-103(b) 8-902, and 8-903, Annotated Code of Maryland
15.20.12.01.htm 15.20.12.01. 01 Scope.. A. This chapter establishes the requirements and standards for the generation and certification of nonpoint source nutrient and sediment credits on agricultural land under the Agricultural Nutrient and Sediment Credit Certification Program.B. The purpose of the Program is to reduce the amount of nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment entering the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries through support of a form of water quality trading utilizing a market-based strategy.
15.20.12.02.htm 15.20.12.02. 02 Definitions.. A. In this chapter, the following terms have the meanings indicated.. B. Terms Defined.. 1) “Aggregator” or “Broker” means a person who collects and compiles credits from individual agricultural non-point sources to resell them.2) “Agronomic Practice” means an annual crop or soil practice that reduces or minimizes nutrient or sediment loss. Examples include but are not limited to cover crops, conservation tillage, reductions in nitrogen fertilizer a
15.20.12.03.htm 15.20.12.03. 03 Eligibility for Credit Certification.. Except as provided by this regulation, the following persons are eligible to have credits certified by the Department in support of nutrient and sediment trading activities:A. An owner or lessee, with owner’s consent, who operates an agricultural operation and who demonstrates that:1) The agricultural management and BMPs implemented on the operation enables that operation to meet baseline requirements pursuant to Regulation .04 o
15.20.12.04.htm 15.20.12.04. 04 Baseline Requirements.. A. A person may not generate nutrient or sediment credits, unless that person’s agricultural operation meets a baseline level of nutrient or sediment reduction which is the more stringent of either the applicable Chesapeake Bay or local TMDL as calculated on the entire farm in aggregate using the MNTT analysis.B. A person may meet the baseline nutrient reduction requirement by using only the following:. 1) Current agronomic practices, including cropping
15.20.12.05.htm 15.20.12.05. 05 Agricultural Nutrient and Sediment Credit Generation.. A. If the provisions of §B of this regulation are met, agricultural nutrient and sediment credits may be generated from any of the following improvements that the Department determines will provide additional reductions in the discharge of farm nutrients and/or sediment:1) Existing or planned agronomic practices;. 2) Land conversion practices; or. 3) Installation of structural practices..
15.20.12.06.htm 15.20.12.06. 06 Lifespan of Credits.. A. A practice may only generate credits when it is installed or placed into operation and all appropriate operation and maintenance guidelines are being followed. The Department shall consider the total estimated annual credits generated from any practice installed and given final certification within a given year to be generated the following year starting January 1.B. Credits may be certified for more than 1 year but shall only be applied annually..
15.20.12.07.htm 15.20.12.07. 07 Approval and Registration of Credits.. A. A person who applies to the Department for approval of agricultural nonpoint source nutrient or sediment credits shall:1) Complete and sign a Certification and Registration Form provided by the Department and furnish a copy of the Farm Summary Worksheet generated by MNTT;2) Provide a copy of the current NMP; and. 3) Provide a copy of the current SCWQP with a map identifying the location and boundaries of the operation and showing field
15.20.12.08.htm 15.20.12.08. 08 Annual Verification and Reporting.. A. All trades involving agricultural credits certified by the Department require, at minimum, annual credit verification and reporting. Inspections will be scheduled as appropriate to practice type.B. A person who buys certified credits shall employ a Department-approved verifier who does not hold an interest in the agricultural operation generating the credits or was not involved in the original application or qualification of the credits.
15.20.12.09.htm 15.20.12.09. 09 Departmental Review.. A. The Department shall schedule site inspections and records reviews on at least 10 percent of all traded credits annually.B. The Department shall assign an approved verifier who:. 1) Meets qualifications provided in Regulation .10 of this chapter; does not hold an interest in the agricultural operation generating certified credits;2) Does not hold an interest in the agricultural operation generating certified credits; and. 3) Is not the same indivi
15.20.12.10.htm 15.20.12.10. 10 Verifier Approval Protocol.. A. An individual may not be approved to act as a verifier as provided by this chapter unless the individual meets the following requirements to be established by the Department:1) Education and experience;. 2) Training; and. 3) Continuing education.. B. The Department may approve a verifier who meets the following eligibility requirements:. 1) Has 3 or more years of experience developing SCWQPs or qualifies as a U.S. Department of Agricult
15.20.12.11.htm 15.20.12.11. 11 Enforcement.. Suspension or Revocation of Credit Certification.. A. The Department may suspend or revoke certification of an agricultural nonpoint source nutrient credit for any violation of Agriculture Article, Title 8, Subtitle 9, Annotated Code of Maryland, any violation of this chapter, or the following:1) Failure to adopt or install any practice or activity certified pending implementation in conformity with standards and specifications or to differ substantially from the or
15.20.12.9999.htm 15.20.12.9999. Administrative History Effective date: May 9, 2016 (43:9 Md. R. 531). Regulation .01B amended effective August 29, 2016 (43:17 Md. R. 956). Regulation .02B amended effective August 29, 2016 (43:17 Md. R. 956). Regulation .05B amended effective August 29, 2016 (43:17 Md. R. 956). Regulation .07C, G amended effective August 29, 2016 (43:17 Md. R. 956). Regulation .08 amended effective August 29, 2016 (43:17 Md. R. 956).
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