173-340-7490  <<  173-340-7491 >>   173-340-7492

WAC 173-340-7491

Exclusions from a terrestrial ecological evaluation.

(1) Criteria for determining that no further evaluation is required. No further evaluation is required if the department determines that a site meets any of the criteria in (a) through (d) of this subsection:
(a) All soil contaminated with hazardous substances is, or will be, located below the point of compliance established under WAC 173-340-7490(4). To qualify for this exclusion, an institutional control shall be required by the department under WAC 173-340-440. An institutional control is not required if the contamination is at least fifteen feet below the ground surface (WAC 173-340-7490 (4)(b)). An exclusion based on planned future land use shall include a completion date for such future development that is acceptable to the department.
(b) All soil contaminated with hazardous substances is, or will be, covered by buildings, paved roads, pavement, or other physical barriers that will prevent plants or wildlife from being exposed to the soil contamination. To qualify for this exclusion, an institutional control shall be required by the department under WAC 173-340-440. An exclusion based on planned future land use shall include a completion date for such future development that is acceptable to the department;
(c) Where the site conditions are related or connected to undeveloped land in the following manner:
(i) For sites contaminated with hazardous substances other than those specified in (c)(ii) of this subsection, there is less than 1.5 acres of contiguous undeveloped land on the site or within 500 feet of any area of the site; and
(ii) For sites contaminated with any of the following hazardous substances: Chlorinated dioxins or furans, PCB mixtures, DDT, DDE, DDD, aldrin, chlordane, dieldrin, endosulfan, endrin, heptachlor or heptachlor epoxide, benzene hexachloride, toxaphene, hexachlorobenzene, pentachlorophenol, or pentachlorobenzene, there is less than 1/4 acre of contiguous undeveloped land on or within 500 feet of any area of the site affected by these hazardous substances. This list does not imply that sampling must be conducted for each of these chemicals at every site. Sampling should be conducted for those chemicals that might be present based on available information, such as current and past uses of chemicals at the site; and
(iii) For the purposes of (c)(i) and (ii) of this subsection, and Table 749-1, "undeveloped land" shall mean land that is not covered by buildings, roads, paved areas or other barriers that would prevent wildlife from feeding on plants, earthworms, insects or other food in or on the soil. "Contiguous" undeveloped land means an area of undeveloped land that is not divided into smaller areas by highways, extensive paving or similar structures that are likely to reduce the potential use of the overall area by wildlife. Roads, sidewalks and other structures that are unlikely to reduce potential use of the area by wildlife shall not be considered to divide a contiguous area into smaller areas.
(d) Concentrations of hazardous substances in soil do not exceed natural background levels, as determined under WAC 173-340-709.
(2) Procedure for a site that does not qualify for an exclusion.
(a) Sites that do not qualify for an exclusion under subsection (1) of this section shall conduct a site-specific terrestrial ecological evaluation if any of the following criteria apply:
(i) The site is located on, or directly adjacent to, an area where management or land use plans will maintain or restore native or seminative vegetation (e.g., green-belts, protected wetlands, forestlands, locally designated environmentally sensitive areas, open space areas managed for wildlife, and some parks or outdoor recreation areas. This does not include park areas used for intensive sport activities such as baseball or football).
(ii) The site is used by a threatened or endangered species; a wildlife species classified by the Washington state department of fish and wildlife as a "priority species" or "species of concern" under Title 77 RCW; or a plant species classified by the Washington state department of natural resources natural heritage program as "endangered," "threatened," or "sensitive" under Title 79 RCW. For plants, "used" means that a plant species grows at the site or has been found growing at the site. For animals, "used" means that individuals of a species have been observed to live, feed or breed at the site.
(iii) The site is located on a property that contains at least ten acres of native vegetation within 500 feet of the site, not including vegetation beyond the property boundaries.
(iv) The department determines that the site may present a risk to significant wildlife populations.
(b) If none of the criteria in (a) of this subsection apply to the site, either a simplified terrestrial ecological evaluation described under WAC 173-340-7492 or a site-specific terrestrial ecological evaluation described under WAC 173-340-7493 shall be conducted.
(c) For the purposes of this section, the following definitions shall apply.
(i) "Native vegetation" means any plant community native to the state of Washington. The following sources shall be used in making this determination: Natural Vegetation of Oregon and Washington, J.F. Franklin and C.T. Dyrness, Oregon State University Press, 1988, and L.C. Hitchcock, C.L. Hitchcock, J.W. Thompson and A. Cronquist, 1955-1969, Vascular Plants of the Pacific Northwest (5 volumes). Areas planted with native species for ornamental or landscaping purposes shall not be considered to be native vegetation.
(ii) "Seminative vegetation" means a plant community that includes at least some vascular plant species native to the state of Washington. The following shall not be considered seminative vegetation: Areas planted for ornamental or landscaping purposes, cultivated crops, and areas significantly disturbed and predominantly covered by noxious, introduced plant species or weeds (e.g., Scotch broom, Himalayan blackberry or knap-weed).
[Statutory Authority: Chapter 70.105D RCW. WSR 01-05-024 (Order 97-09A), ยง 173-340-7491, filed 2/12/01, effective 8/15/01.]
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