Agrichemical Facilities Containment Program

This groundwater protection program became effective on January 1, 1990 and is intended to ensure that bulk pesticides and fertilizers stored and handled in Illinois are managed in an environmentally responsible manner. Pursuant to the Illinois Pesticide Act and the Lawncare Products Application and Notice Act, the Department issues permits for the design, construction, and operation of containment structures and systems intended to prevent the release of pesticides and fertilizers at retail agrichemical and lawncare facilities across the state. Generally, permits have a 5 year lifetime and are renewable. At of the end of the 2011 calendar year, 1,041 agrichemical facilities and 1,132 lawncare facilities were operating under Department permits or agreements through this program. In addition, the Department annually inspects facilities to ensure that permitted structures are properly operated and maintained. 

​All pesticide and fertilizer facilities over a certain size or that handle over a certain amount of these products are required to utilize containment systems such as diking and loading pads to protect against the unintended release of these materials. Both commercial and non-commercial facilities are affected by the requirements and are defined as follows:

  • "Agrichemical facility" means a site used for commercial purposes, where bulk pesticides are stored in a single container in excess of 300 gallons of liquid pesticide or 300 pounds of dry pesticide for more than 30 days per year or where more than 300 gallons of liquid pesticide or 300 pounds of dry pesticide are being mixed, repackaged or transferred from one container to another within a 30-day period or a site where bulk fertilizers are stored, mixed, repackaged or transferred from one container to another.
  • "Non-commercial agrichemical facility" means a site, including the land and structures and equipment fixed thereon, designed and used for each of the following activities:

    • ​Storing pesticides or fertilizer for more than 45 consecutive days in a single container holding in excess of:
      • 300 gallons bulk liquid pesticides; or
      • ​300 pounds bulk dry pesticides; or
      • ​5000 gallons bulk liquid commercial fertilizer; or
      • ​50,000 pounds bulk dry commercial fertilizer
    • ​​Loading and mixing, including bulk repackaging, of pesticides or fertilizer at a permanent site for more than a 45 day period in quantities in excess of:
      • 300 gallons bulk liquid pesticides; or
      • 300 pounds bulk dry pesticides; or
      • ​5000 gallons bulk liquid commercial fertilizer; or
      • 50,000 pounds bulk dry commercial fertilizer
    • ​​The non-commercial application of pesticides or fertilizer.

Owners or operators of facilities subject to the regulations must register with the Illinois Department of Agriculture's Bureau of Environmental Programs and apply for and receive a permit for the construction and operation of a containment facility. 

Compliance assistance relative to the permitting process as well as containment design suggestions is available from Department staff upon request. Permit application forms are available from the Department's web site. Complete copies of the regulations as well as the Illinois Pesticide Act are also available from the Department.

Forms and Requirements