text of approved code of
The Code of Practice for the Protection
An approved code of practice under Article 16 of the Water
Pollution (Jersey) Law 2000 (‘The Water Code’)
This Code of Good Practice (generally referred to as ‘the Water
Code’) is issued as an Approved Code of Practice for the purposes of Article 16
of the Water Pollution (Jersey) Law 2000 (as Amended). Prior to issuing this
Code, officers from Growth, Housing and Environment have consulted with
relevant Stakeholders, in accordance with Article 9 of the Law.
The overriding purpose of the Code is to provide practical guidance
to those businesses that deal with fertilisers and promote good practices by
them, with the aim of preventing or reducing the pollution of controlled waters
(which includes in particular ponds, streams and reservoirs as well as all
Compliance with the Code will also constitute a defence of ‘due
diligence’ in circumstances that may otherwise amount to an offence under the
I commend this Code to all concerned.
for the Environment
2 Introduction and
background to this water code
The purpose of this Code of Practice is
to provide practical guidance for those involved in activities that can have an
impact on water quality, including their advisors. The Code contains measures
to reduce the risk of causing water pollution.
responsibilities and where to get advice
Businesses are strongly recommended to comply with this code of
practice, especially in view of the provisions of Articles 15(3), 18(4) and
18(5) of the Water Pollution (Jersey) Law 2000 which relates to a ‘defence’
under the Law of due diligence.
Natural Environment is responsible for administering the majority of
the environmental legislation highlighted in this Code and for the Water
Management Plan 2017-2021 (WMP).
To find out more about the Water Management Plan for Jersey and
about joint working to tackle these challenges please also contact the Natural
Officers from Natural Environment can also offer advice
on practical steps that can be taken to minimize the pollution risks from
certain activities and on the requirements for Rural Support payments. You
can also seek advice from an independent consultant. Natural Environment
recommends that any advice taken is from a suitably qualified advisor, for
example FACTS or BASIS.
2.2 Useful Contacts
Water Pollution (Jersey) Law 2000
This Code of Good Practice for the Protection of Water (The Water
Code) is a Statutory Code under Article 16 of the Water Pollution (Jersey) Law
The Code applies to all landowners and users of land. These include,
but not limited to, farmers (arable and pastoral), small holders and liveries
and any persons disposing of wastes (such as treated sewage sludge, wastes from
water treatment, wood chip, other organic manures etc.) to land.
The Water Pollution (Jersey) Law 2000 contains pollution prevention
provisions and allows for the prosecution of people or organisations who cause
or knowingly permit the pollution of controlled waters. ‘Controlled waters’
include all surface waters (such as ponds, streams, brooks, field ditches) and
Under Article 17(1) of the Water Pollution (Jersey) Law 2000, it is
an offence to cause or knowingly permit pollution of any ‘controlled waters’
unless it is done under the conditions of a discharge permit.
Anyone wishing to discharge a polluting substance, or
energy, into controlled waters can apply to the Minister of the Environment
for a discharge permit which, if granted, will set out the conditions under
which that discharge can take place.
The maximum penalty for a pollution offence is an unlimited fine
and/or two years imprisonment. In addition, a person found guilty of causing
pollution may also have to pay for any remedial action and for costs incurred
by the Minister of the Environment.
Businesses can also be held liable for water pollution resulting
from tampering, vandalism or accidental damage by third parties.
2.4 The Water Management Plan 2017-2021 (WMP)
In 2014, the Natural Environment published the report ‘Challenges to
the Water Environment in Jersey’. The report sets out the then ‘current status’
of the water environment.
The Water Management Plan 2017-2021 (WMP) followed on from the first
report, setting out the actions that need to be taken as a priority to help
ensure healthy water supplies and better improve the status of the water
The key issues and objectives identified for the first five-year WMP
· Nitrate: Reduce the concentrations in the Island’s groundwater and surface
· Phosphates: Increase understanding of the likely scale of the phosphate issue
on the Island and require good practice measures to reduce soil phosphorus (P)
indices and losses of P to controlled waters.
Increase understanding of the levels of pesticides
in surface and groundwater throughout the Island whilst strengthening the
mechanisms that regulate, control and monitor pesticide use and screen for
By following the advice in this Code you will be making an important
contribution to achieving these objectives.
2.5 Water Pollution (Water
Management) (Jersey) Order 2020
In 2020, the Minister for the Environment designated eight Water
Management Areas (WMA’s) in Jersey under the Water Pollution (Water Management)
(Jersey) Order 2020 to which this code of practice is appended
The restrictions and requirements imposed by the new Water Pollution
(Water Management) (Jersey) Order 2020 apply in respect of any person who
imports, sells, purchases, stores or uses any fertiliser in the course of a business
activity or operation in any Water Management Area designated by this Order. The
2020 Order provides:
Fertiliser in this context means ‘a chemical or natural substance
that is added to soil to improve its productivity’. This therefore includes
organic materials and manures used as fertilisers or soil conditioners as well
as inorganic (manufactured) fertiliser and other chemicals such as lime.
· Article 4 imposes requirements on the storage
· Article 5 imposes requirements on the
planning and management of fertiliser use, including a requirement for
producing a ‘nutrient management plan’ and an ‘organic fertiliser management
· Article 6 requires equipment
for the application of fertiliser to be maintained in a good state of repair and in the case of mechanical
equipment for it to be calibrated at least once a year.
· Article 7 imposes restrictions on the
application of fertilisers.
· Article 8 is
concerned with soil cultivation and management.
· Article 9 sets
out the requirements for the keeping of plans and records.
The Water Pollution (Water
Management) (Jersey) Order 2020
There are restrictions and
requirements imposed by law that are designed to reduce the pollution of
water by some land management activities. See this Order for the current
legal requirements for the storage, planning, management and use of
fertilisers. This includes inorganic and organic fertiliser. There are also
rules in place for soil management and record keeping. Following the rules
are a legal requirement and you should ensure you know what they are and
whether they apply to you and your business activities and operations.
Note: This applies to all business activities or
operations except for any
amenity land or any landscape gardener working at domestic
For up to date information please visit www.gov.je and
type ‘water pollution’ into the search.
Land managers wishing
to receive States of Jersey financial support under the current Rural Economy
Strategy (RES) 2017-2021 must meet certain criteria to qualify for payment.
Applicants must demonstrate that they are operating to the standards required
by the RES and be able to provide evidence that all activities conform to all
relevant legislation and Codes of Good Practice (including this Water Code).
3 About Water Pollution
3.1 Sources of pollution
Water pollution can come from a number of different sources. If the
pollution comes from a single source, such as an oil or pesticide spill, it is
called ‘point-source pollution’. If
the pollution comes from many sources, it is called nonpoint-source or ‘diffuse
3.1.1 Point source pollution
A point source is a single, identifiable source of pollution, such as oil from a fuel
tank or slurry overflowing from a storage facility. Point sources of pollution
from agriculture may include discharges from animal housing and feeding
operations, slurry tanks, silage clamps and handling, mixing and cleaning areas
for pesticides, fertilisers and fuel stores.
Diffuse pollution refers to those inputs and impacts which occur
over a wide area and are not easily attributed to a single source or incident. A
number of individually minor sources of contamination can be highly significant
over an entire water catchment. They are often associated with particular land
uses, as opposed to individual point source discharges. If the groundwater in a
catchment is contaminated, then any boreholes or wells and also the streams in
the catchment are also likely to be affected. Small water courses, with little dilution
as in Jersey, are more likely to be adversely affected by diffuse pollution
than larger rivers. Abstraction from watercourses can exacerbate this problem
by lessening the potential for dilution.
The impact of the agricultural industry, which covers approximately
50% of the land area of the Island is significant. The uncontrolled spreading
of slurries and manure, the application of inorganic fertilisers, the ploughing
and cultivation of the land and the use of pesticides can increase the risk of diffuse
water pollution. Run-off from roads and yards, the surface of fields, manure
and feed storage silos and storage buildings are also all potential sources of
The causes of diffuse pollution can be difficult to remedy, mainly
because it is the collective impact of decisions made by many individual land
managers in respect of a number of different activities that make the
difference. Adhering to the good practice contained in this Code will help to
prevent damage to soils and losses of nutrients and promote good soil husbandry.
The activities in a catchment as a whole need to be considered and
solutions developed between stakeholders. Don’t hesitate to get involved in the
partnership initiatives being established in Jersey. By collectively taking
action to improve land management there is the potential to really make a
positive difference to water quality in Jersey and the environment in general.
3.2 Why is it important to
reduce pollutant losses to the environment?
The States of Jersey and many stakeholders have been working
together to protect the water environment in Jersey in recent years. Ongoing
monitoring shows that the quality of the Island’s water is improving but there
is still a lot to be done. Currently the majority of Jersey’s water bodies are
at ‘Moderate Status’. This needs improving as it
is less than ‘Good Status’ and is mostly driven by elevated levels of nutrients
found in both surface waters and groundwater. The long-term target is to
improve the environmental status of as many of our water bodies as possible to
Excess nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorous, can harm soils,
watercourses, reservoirs and coastal waters, by causing algal blooms and by
changing the natural balance of plants, insects, and other life. In the wrong
place pesticides can kill insects and fish and can contaminate reservoirs
making the water unfit to drink. In some cases, there may be human health
implications, particularly from the effects of pesticides.
responsibilities of businesses
Many common practices pose a risk to water quality in Jersey. This
risk is increased where poor standards of management and operation are in
place. The inappropriate application of inorganic fertilisers, the storage and
inappropriate use of organic manures, the poor storage, use and disposal of
pesticides and the storage, leaks and spills of fuel oil can and do cause
Make sure that you are informed about how to prevent water
pollution, that you manage and train your staff and contractors appropriately
and you are ready to respond to a pollution incident:
a. Land managers should ensure they have plans in place for the known
pollution hazards on their land in order to mitigate against a storage failure
or spill and to minimise the effects of an emergency on the water environment.
Carefully plan all storage, handling and use of
livestock slurries and manures, animal feedstuffs, silage effluent, fuel oil,
dirty water, fertilisers, veterinary medicines, pesticides and other chemicals
and ensure staff and contractors follow procedures. Don’t just leave plans on
the shelf gathering dust.
b. Staff and contractors who handle, store, use, spread or dispose
of any substance that could pollute water should be aware of their
responsibilities and know about the substances they are dealing with and the
effects they may have on the environment.
c. Make sure that all workers are suitably trained, qualified and
competent to carry out the operation for which they are employed. They should
know how to operate and maintain any equipment they use and know what to do in
d. Make sure workers are aware of the legal requirements and are
prepared to follow the guidance in this Code.
e. Know the position of boreholes, springs, wells, streams and field
and yard drainage systems and also which fields are prone to soil issues. Know
how to protect them during normal activities and in the event of a pollution
f. Make an assessment of the runoff risk from each field before and
during field operations. A field risk assessment map has been compiled and can
be accessed via www.gov.je to assist in making these
assessments. Also look at the weather forecast if appropriate.
g. Staff and contractors should also know about field drainage
systems and which fields are prone to soil erosion as substances, especially
phosphates and agrochemicals, can be attached to soil particles and carried
into water with the soil. Soil lost from the field is valuable topsoil that
cannot be replaced.
h. All areas and buildings should be designed and managed to
minimize runoff and pollution and staff should know the whereabouts of pipes,
channels and outfalls.
Inspect all storage facilities regularly for
leaks and damage.
i. Emergency contingency plans should be in the form of easy to
read documents placed in a conspicuous position and available to all staff in
case the land manager is not on the premises at the time of an accident. Those
involved should know where the contingency plans are located and be aware of
their content. Equipment required, should an emergency occur, must be easily
accessible and staff and contractors should receive regular training in its use.
j. Ammonium nitrate fertiliser must be stored securely, where there
is no public access (and out of view from roads etc.). Ideally, store fertiliser
in a locked building, and carry out regular stock checks. Advice should be
sought from the Jersey Health and Safety Inspectorate (see Useful Contacts, Sect. 2.2).
k. All facilities and machinery involved in the storage and use of
the above substances should be regularly inspected to ensure they meet legal
and best practice standards.
Building Control Regulations are in operation to ensure
that buildings and storage facilities are built to the correct standard and
are fit for purpose. Pre‑application advice is available from the
Planning and Building Services.
4 Diffuse pollution
4.1 Diffuse pollution:
sources and pollutants
There is a wide range of potential diffuse pollution sources which
are associated with management practices and which can harm the environment.
This pollution tends to arise over a large area and is dependent on what
happens on the surface of the land and how it is managed.
Losses of nutrients or agrochemicals to land and water also
represent a financial loss to businesses. Businesses and the environment can
both benefit from applying these inputs in the right amounts and at the right
Nutrients such as nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) can cause severe
problems in streams and coastal waters by, for instance, contributing to the
development of algal blooms or sea lettuce overgrowth on our coastline.
Nutrients can be lost from manures and slurries as well as from other organic
wastes spread on land, and significant losses can also be associated with
inorganic fertilisers and soil. Advice on their use must be tailored to the
particular circumstances that occur in Jersey in order to prevent losses and
reduce the risk of pollution.
When nutrients are carried out of the crop rooting zone
by water draining through the soil, they are said to have ‘leached’. This
represents a potential loss to the land owner and is a major cause of
elevated nitrate levels in our water in Jersey.
Nitrogen occurs naturally in soil and water and is an essential
plant nutrient. Sources of organic and inorganic nitrogen are used to improve
soil fertility and promote crop growth. Chemical fertilisers (containing
nitrogen) usually contain nitrogen in the form of ammonium and nitrate. Nitrate
is very soluble and is therefore at risk of being washed into watercourses and
groundwater by leaching from the soil, especially in late autumn and early
winter when soil may be bare or there is little crop uptake. Subsequent
rainfall readily washes nitrate from the soil profile.
The main sources and losses of nitrate to water are shown in the
Nitrogen based fertilisers are used in significant amounts in both
arable and livestock farming. Nitrate (from inorganic nitrogen fertilisers or
organic manures) is leached rapidly especially because it is very soluble. This
is particularly important during rainfall if nitrogen fertiliser has been
over-applied and the soils themselves are free draining. In areas where there
are sandy soils overlying a shallow water table, as in Jersey, there are
particular risks of nitrate leaching into groundwater.
There is also high risk of water pollution from nitrate losses if
livestock manures and slurries with a high proportion of their nitrogen content
in soluble form (e.g. slurry, pig and poultry manures) are applied when crop
uptake is low or non-existent (i.e. in the autumn or winter period).
Agricultural land is the main source of nitrate in many streams and
groundwater. This is a cause for concern for two main reasons. Firstly, because
of possible risks to human health posed by high levels of nitrate in public and
private drinking water sources. Secondly, elevated levels of nitrate and
phosphorus are considered to be significant contributors to eutrophication. (‘Eutrophication’
is the enrichment of water by nitrogen compounds, causing an accelerated growth
of algae and higher forms of plant life to produce an undesirable disturbance
to the balance of organisms present in the water and to the quality of the
Phosphorus is an essential plant nutrient that occurs naturally in
soils either as inorganic phosphate or as part of the organic matter.
Phosphorus fertilisers, manures and slurries supply phosphate to improve soil
fertility and to maintain plant growth. Once added to soils, phosphate is
normally strongly bound to soil particles and has a very low solubility.
Drainage water percolating through soils therefore normally contains very low
concentrations of phosphate, except when soil phosphate levels are excessively
high. Phosphate can also be lost from land if soil erosion occurs or due to
surface run-off following the application of manures and slurries.
Phosphorus can contribute to eutrophication of freshwater habitats
and is a particular threat to still or slow-moving freshwaters. Agricultural
and other land can be a significant source of phosphorus input to watercourses.
Phosphorus from land can reach watercourses in various forms and by
various routes. Their relative impact will depend on the particular catchment.
The main losses are:
· Surface run-off, particularly of
recently spread animal manures.
· Erosion of soil particles.
· Particulate and dissolved phosphorus in
water flowing from land drains.
· Phosphorus can also be leached to
Soil is considered a non-renewable resource due to the time it takes
to form. It should therefore be protected from damage and loss. In addition,
soil and water quality are very closely linked.
The quality of soil and its inherent fertility depends upon:
· The nutrient content and its balanced
supply to plants.
· Organic matter content.
· Soil pH.
· Biological activity.
· The physical condition of the soil (soil
Soil structure has a major influence on the rooting potential,
drainage, water-holding capacity, strength and consistency of soils. Any
degradation of structure will result in limited land use and agricultural
Eroded soil from grazed and cultivated land, muddy run-off from
roads, yards or field gateways can cause environmental problems such as silting
of gravel beds in watercourses. These areas are essential habitats for many
aquatic insects and provide spawning areas for fish and amphibians. Limit
livestock access to watercourses. Wherever possible, install water troughs and
fence off watercourses to eliminate this problem.
Soil particles are also important because they can carry more
serious pollutants. For example, some pesticides (such as pre-emergence
herbicides) bind firmly onto soil particles and are therefore liable to
contaminate watercourses when soil is lost from fields. Similarly, mud on yards
and roads may carry oily residues that can end up in a watercourse.
Phosphorus, attached to soil particles, can be lost from land via
run-off entering watercourses and cause pollution. It should also be remembered
that erosion very often involves the loss of topsoil, the most fertile soil in
The natural soil biological processes, which are vital for healthy
soils, are dependent on soil organisms ranging from bacteria and fungi to
earthworms. Soil management and the presence of contaminants affect the
activities of these organisms. Heavy metals, excessive fertiliser and organic
chemical loadings (including pesticides) can suppress such biological activity.
Good soil husbandry, nutrient planning and careful use of pesticides combined
with a well-managed crop rotation will maintain good biological activity.
Livestock slurries and manures, and other organic materials can help
improve soil fertility and can save on manufactured fertiliser costs. However,
they are highly polluting if spread at the wrong time or in the wrong place and
can cause ‘point source’ pollution incidents and add to problems of diffuse
pollution through excess nutrient loadings to land. Apart from the nutrient
content and high organic loading, the possibility of microbiological
contamination can threaten streams, coastal waters and individual groundwater
sources and affect compliance with environmental quality standards.
Normally, the practices described in this section should be
sufficient to prevent or at least minimise the risk of diffuse pollution. In
some cases, however, it may be necessary to consider the installation of some
form of treatment system near the source of potential pollution. It may be
possible, for example, to install a wetland, reedbed or biofilter system to
deal with contaminated roof or dirty yard run-off at the farm. Specialist
advice should be sought on the selection, design and installation of such
systems and the Natural Environment should be consulted beforehand to ensure
that the requirements of environmental and waste management legislation will be
sludge and water treatment sludge
Sewage sludge or industrial wastes can contain potentially toxic
substances such as heavy metals and persistent organic chemicals which may contaminate
soil and pollute water.
Certain precautions prior to their use on land must be undertaken.
Analysis of the waste before it is used, assessing the lands suitability prior
to spreading, calculation of the growing crops nutrient requirements, soil sampling
and nutrient budgeting can all reduce the risk of diffuse pollution occurring.
Anyone wishing to apply industrial wastes to land must possess a waste
management license unless the activity is exempt under the law (contact GHE).
Note that the application of sludge to land should comply with guidelines in ‘The
Safe Sludge Matrix’ and must be included in your nutrient management plan.
Compost can be made from a wide variety of biodegradable materials,
such as domestic garden (botanical) wastes or waste food. Some composting
systems also process small amounts of paper, card and untreated wood for
example. Composting can be defined as ‘the natural breakdown of
biodegradable materials through mixing, self-generated heating and aeration to form
a stable, soil-like material’.
There are a number of benefits of using compost as a soil
conditioner, as long as the compost is produced to an acceptable standard such
as PAS 100 or equivalent, which safeguards the environment and ensures the
product being applied is of a suitable quality.
Benefits of compost:
yields - studies show that you can improve maximum
yield potential by increasing the amount of organic matter in the soil.
fertiliser substitution - compost contains slow
release, crop-available nutrients, including phosphate, potash, magnesium and
soil structure and water management - adding
compost improves soil structure, which is good for crops (good water
infiltration and retention) and also makes it easier to work, saving fuel and
pests and diseases - the organic action of compost
can help to inhibit pests and diseases within the soil (for example Rhizoctonia).
savings and traffic tolerance - compost improves
soil structure, making it easier to work whilst using less fuel. Improving soil
structure will make it more resistant to compaction from traffic and will
extend the conditions in which it can be worked.
and other chemicals
A very wide range of chemical compounds are used as pesticides and
each of these interacts with soil and water differently. Some will move through
soil quite easily and enter groundwater. Groundwater in Jersey is widely
extracted for both the public water supply and for private drinking water
(wells and boreholes).
Pesticides can have damaging effects on water habitats
and water resources, especially the Island’s reservoirs and groundwater. When
using pesticides, ensure you have sought qualified advice on the options
available in order to choose the right product and to safeguard against any
adverse effects on the environment.
Once present in groundwater, pesticides can be present for many
years and are very costly to remove. It is therefore important that such
chemicals are prevented from entering the island’s groundwater in the first
The storage and use of pesticides is regulated by the Pesticides
(Jersey) Law 1991. Pesticides should be used in accordance with the Code of
Practice for the Safe Use of Pesticides issued under Article 7 of the
Pesticides (Jersey) Law 1991. Please check for updates with the Natural
Environment as this legislation is currently being reviewed.
It is essential to avoid spraying pesticides in conditions and circumstances
where drift can occur. Buffer strips or unsprayed headlands should be
considered prior to spraying fields bordered by watercourses or ditches.
If poorly managed or controlled, pesticides in tank washings, from
the cleaning of protective clothing, or from residues in bags or containers,
can cause pollution. Due to the particular risks that arise during pesticide
handling and wash-down operations, consideration should be given to the
installation of purpose-built facilities. Guidance on the design of such areas
is available from the Natural Environment or the Crop Protection Association
4.2 Effective planning,
management and control of potential pollutants
The key to minimising pollution is to ensure effective planning,
management and control of potential pollutants. Follow the advice in this code
and in the Water Pollution (Water Management) Order 2020 to help reduce the
impact of land management activities.
4.3 Rules on fertiliser
Nitrogen and phosphorus are key diffuse water pollutants and are
also major plant nutrients. By storing and using fertiliser appropriately you
can minimise pollution risks, comply with regulations and ensure that crops get
the nutrients that they need in the right amounts.
Applications of inorganic nitrogen to early potatoes are
subject to high levels of leaching. It has been estimated that up to 50% of
applied N is lost in this way. Put in financial terms this is worth £200,000
- £300,000 across the potato industry per annum.
The Water Pollution (Water Management) (Jersey) Order 2020 makes the
following a legal requirement:
a. Store fertiliser
where it can’t get into drains and watercourses or leach into groundwater.
store fertiliser (inorganic or organic) within 50 metres of a borehole, well or
spring unless the storage is in a fit for purpose building or other structure.
store fertiliser within 10 metres of any inland water (streams etc.), unless
the storage is in a fit for purpose building or other structure.
store organic fertiliser in the same location for more than one year or use the
same location again for such storage for at least 2 years unless the
storage is in a fit for purpose building or other structure.
and use a written Nutrient Management Plan that includes:
a. A field by field plan.
b. An assessment of the nutrient requirement of each planting or
c. An assessment of the nutrient supply from any organic fertiliser inputs.
d. A calculation of fertiliser to be applied taking into account all
e. A record of actual applications of fertiliser to each field.
and use an Organic Fertiliser Management Plan that includes:
a. An assessment of the adequacy of storage based on production
figures and of whether there is sufficient land available for spreading.
b. The identification of suitable and unsuitable areas for the
application of organic fertilizer. A field risk map has been compiled to assist
with this and can be accessed via www.gov.je.
c. A risk assessment procedure for the spreading of organic manures.
4.3.4 Apply fertilisers (inorganic and organic) in
the right place, at the right time, in the right amounts and in the right
a. Calibrate and maintain equipment at least annually.
b. Don’t apply more than the RB209 recommended amount of fertiliser to
c. Don’t apply more than 210 kg/Ha of Nitrogen to Jersey Royals.
d. Don’t apply Phosphate to soils with an index of more than 4, unless
evidence is provided that satisfies that, due to the low soil temperature, the
application of fertiliser with a P soil index in excess of 4 is necessary to
meet reasonable growing conditions;
e. Don’t apply fertiliser unless there is a demonstrated need and in
accordance with the advice of a properly qualified advisor. The amount of
phosphorus lost by erosion, leaching or drain flow will largely depend on the
soil phosphorus level. The higher the soil phosphorus levels, the greater the
f. Don’t apply more than 170kg/Ha of total nitrogen as organic
fertiliser as livestock manure to land or more than 250 kg/Ha total nitrogen in
all other cases in any 12 months.
apply organic fertiliser to land that is:
a. Within 50 metres of a groundwater source.
b. Within 10 metres of any inland water.
c. Frozen, waterlogged, compacted on the surface or covered with
d. A loafing paddock or other heavily-grazed field.
apply manufactured fertiliser to land that is:
a. Within 5 metres of a groundwater source.
b. Within 5 metres of any inland water.
c. Frozen, waterlogged, compacted on the surface or covered with
a. Of fertilisers imported, sold or purchased and of their nature
and intended use.
b. Of the nature and composition of fertilisers stored, how long the
storage is for and how the storage is managed.
c. Of cropping and nutrient and pesticide applications.
Make the relevant records available to those sharing the land to an
extent that enables them to fulfil the requirements of this code.
4.4 Other measures to
consider that help reduce losses of nitrate
ploughing up permanent pasture
Avoid ploughing up of traditionally permanent pastures, if possible,
due to the flush of nitrate which can continue for several years after such
action. If the permanent pasture is to be cropped or re-seeded, account should
be taken of the nitrate release in calculating the fertiliser applications for
the subsequent crop. If permanent pasture is to be re-seeded it is important to
ensure that a full crop cover is established as quickly as possible, by early
October at the latest.
Winter crops sown in late October/November will have little effect
in reducing the amount of nitrate lost in the winter but can help to stop
surface runoff. A better strategy for reducing leaching is to grow a spring
sown crop (i.e. Jersey Royals) with the land remaining in grass or other catch
crop for as long as possible over the winter period.
If possible, a cover or catch crop, such as Italian Ryegrass or
mustard etc., should be sown in fields that would otherwise be bare over the
autumn and winter period.
Run-off from rutted or compacted ground can be a particular problem
for some rotations, including potatoes, maize and vegetables. The use of buffer
strips can assist in reducing the impacts of soil erosion and nutrient losses.
Where intensive grazing is practised, a high percentage of the
nitrogen is returned to the land as excreta and urine resulting in high soil
concentrations of available N. The loss of nitrate from the grassland through
leaching may therefore be high, if intensively grazed by livestock throughout
220.127.116.11 Planning manufactured
fertiliser (containing nitrogen) application to grassland and arable crops
Manufactured fertiliser (containing nitrogen) should not be applied
to grassland until the spring, close to the time when the nitrogen is needed
for grass growth, and only then if soil and weather conditions are suitable. A
useful indicator to when nitrogen should be applied to grassland is the point
at which soil temperature is 5oC or more for five days. For arable
crops, manufactured fertiliser (containing nitrogen) should be applied at the
start of periods of rapid crop growth and nitrogen uptake.
18.104.22.168 Organic farming
Organic farming does still pose potential risks of nitrate leaching
due to organic manure use, grazing and ploughing-in of grass and crop residues.
Organic farmers should therefore follow Best Practice guidelines described in
22.214.171.124 Using buffer zones near sensitive habitats or high risk areas
Leave, where possible, uncultivated strips of land adjoining
sensitive habitats (e.g. wetlands, botanically rich pastures, etc.). This area
can act as a buffer between the land under cultivation and the valuable
habitat. Take into account natural heritage and conservation issues.
Design of buffer strips will depend on local circumstances. The
detailed design of a buffer strip will be closely related to the problem to be
addressed, and specialist advice on the best way forward is recommended. A
small margin is still going to be better than none; however, if erosion
continues then consideration should be given to establishing a permanent grass
5 Soil Management
Soil is a non-renewable resource (due to the time it takes to form)
and it should be protected from damage and loss. Taking the time to look at
soil structure is fundamental to achieving better land management, which
supports profitable farming and helps protect the environment.
Land should be managed in such a way that the risk of pollution to
controlled waters is minimised and managed in accordance with a ‘soil
protection plan’. This is to help ensure that the soil is managed, the
productivity of the land is optimised and the risk of pollution to controlled
waters is minimised.
5.2 Soil and water erosion
Soil erosion is a natural process, caused by the action of both wind
and water, though it can be exacerbated by inappropriate management. Certain
fields/soils are more susceptible to erosion than others and inappropriate
cropping, soil management and cultivations can increase the degree of risk.
Loss of soils through erosion can affect productivity and
profitability and result in off-site problems, including in water pollution, flash
flooding and road and drain blockage. Soil loss by water erosion occurs from
sloping arable and rotational grassland, particularly on sandy and loamy soils.
Water erosion may occur whenever rainfall intensity exceeds the infiltration
rate of the soil surface and the surface run-off is heavy and fast enough to
move soil particles. Bare soils, fine seedbeds, potato drills and ridges are
particularly at risk from water erosion.
Careful management can substantially reduce the risk of soil and
water erosion. The following measures may apply, and should be considered for
inclusion in the Soil Protection Plan, if required:
· Reduce run-off by increasing surface
drainage using sub-soilers to alleviate compaction.
· Encourage topsoil stability by using
· Avoid over-cultivation and excessively deep
working of the land.
· Soil erosion on susceptible fields can
be minimised by using minimum tillage systems, diversion systems and grass
buffer strips, and also by adapting field activities according to local risks
and previous experience of soil loss.
· Use minimal cultivation techniques with
the crop sown at right angles to the direction of rolling where applicable.
· Establish crops across the contours of a
· Avoid soil compaction by minimizing the
weight on each wheel and by spreading the load over as large an area as
possible by using dual and/or flotation tyres.
· The risk of run-off and losses of
nitrogen is increased in compacted soil. Physical damage to soils also reduces crop
growth and therefore the rate of nitrogen uptake by the crop. This damage can
to some extent be avoided by reducing the number of field operations
particularly when the soil is vulnerable to damage (e.g. when wet, after frost,
etc.). Flotation tyres can be both positive and negative, in that they limit
compaction but may encourage field access in conditions which are really not
· Establish crops as early as possible.
· Cultivated soils which are light
textured should not be left without a crop or stubble cover during the autumn
and winter period. Changes to crop establishment and field management practices
should also be considered in fields with a history of soil erosion. Sow cover
crops early enough to establish cover over winter. Use permanent grass buffer
strips both within fields and between fields to reduce the potential impact on
· Sow permanent grass if repetitive water
erosion occurs which cannot be controlled by changes in husbandry or cropping.
· Avoid overgrazing and poaching on banks
of watercourses, particularly at watering points and feeding areas.
· Encourage regeneration of trees, shrubs
and vegetation which help to stabilize the borders adjacent to flowing water.
· When irrigating, ensure water
application is uniform and rates are not too high or droplets too large. This
will avoid sealing the soil surface and minimize run-off and soil erosion.
quality and nutrient status
Soils should be sampled and analysed at least every four years for
phosphorus, potassium, magnesium and pH. Soil sampling for SMN should be
carried out where appropriate.
Plants require adequate supplies of N, P, K, magnesium, calcium,
sulphur and trace elements to grow satisfactorily. These are generally supplied
from soil reserves, supplemented particularly for N, P and K by organic manures
and inorganic fertilisers.
If soil pH and organic matter are maintained at appropriate levels,
N, P, K and sulphur inputs and/or soil reserves can meet most plant nutrient
requirements. The appropriate type of lime should be applied to achieve the
correct balance between nutrients and target pH for crop or grass growth.
Excessive soil nutrient levels (particularly N and P) should be avoided as
leaching or erosion of nutrient rich soils to watercourses can cause pollution
and promote algal growth (i.e. eutrophication).
5.4 Acidification of soils
The majority of soils in Jersey are naturally acidic and are subject
to natural acidification processes from fertiliser and manure use, plant growth
and rainfall and to other pollutants from industry. Soil susceptibility depends
on soil type and cropping. The result is a reduction in the soil pH level over
time unless regular applications of an appropriate type of lime are made.
For most arable crops, the pH of mineral soils should be maintained
at pH 6.3. The reduction in lime application in Jersey is resulting in more
acid soils. This will reduce crop yield as well as the efficiency of manufactured
fertiliser use. Acidic soils will produce acidic drainage and may therefore
result in deterioration in water quality on the other hand. It is equally
important not to over-lime soils as this will reduce nutrient availability and
uptake of some trace elements resulting in reduced plant growth. The target is
to achieve the pH levels mentioned above.
importance of organic matter
Organic matter in the topsoil influences its physical, chemical and
biological behaviour, particularly its structural stability, ease of
cultivation, water retention capacity and nutrient availability to plants. Most
soils have a reasonable supply but if the organic matter in a soil falls, it
can impair its ability to support plant growth.
Where organic matter levels are lower than is desirable, they can
usually be increased by sowing a grass ley or by incorporating crop residues or
organic manures evenly over several years. The establishment of a cover crop
after Jersey Royal potatoes have been harvested can help maintain soil organic
matter levels and is also important to reduce soil erosion and reduce diffuse
the best physical condition for soil
Over-compaction, due to damage caused by machinery and high stocking
densities, is an increasing problem in Jersey. Compaction restricts root growth
and limits soil drainage which in turn results in increased run-off, more
frequent flooding, increased erosion and the transfer of potential pollutants
to surface waters. In compacted soils, aeration is reduced resulting in poor
root growth and reduced availability of plant nutrients. To avoid the
degradation of soil structure, avoid the use of heavy machinery and livestock
poaching when soils are soft or saturated and select appropriate cultivation
techniques to mitigate against the creation of a ‘soil pan’ just below
Preventing compaction is easier than correcting it and regular soil
profile inspections should be made, particularly on headlands and tram-lines
and/or where Jersey Royals have been grown continuously for several years, to
assess soil conditions.
Prior to land being used for storage of building materials and/or
used for other development purposes permission must be gained from the Natural
Environment. In addition, the developer must provide a detailed inventory of
the quality of the land and the condition of both topsoil and subsoil and a
detailed specification and method statement for its reinstatement prior to the
work commencing. The degradation of agricultural land is an offence under the Protection
of Agricultural Land (Jersey) Law 1964.
against the contamination of soils
To protect the long-term productivity of the soil in Jersey it is
necessary to be aware of the many potential sources of contamination, to assess
their significance and then take the necessary steps to prevent, limit or
remedy their effects.
Soil contamination may affect:
· Soil processes - (physical, chemical and
biological) leading to degradation of soil quality.
· Plant growth.
· Human or animal health, by uptake of
pesticides or Potentially Toxic Elements (PTEs) into plants resulting in entry
of toxins into the food chain.
· Watercourses by run off, leaching or
erosion from contaminated land.
Although a wide range of PTEs may contaminate soils, in practice
problems usually arise from a relatively small number of elements. The
following PTEs may cause problems due to the presence of excessive amounts in
soils: zinc, copper, lead, cadmium, arsenic, nickel, chromium, mercury, selenium
and molybdenum. While the presence of essential trace elements such as zinc and
copper is necessary for plant and animal nutrition, excessive concentrations
can affect the health of plants, animals and humans.
The most likely source of such PTEs is from the application of
sewage sludge and non-agricultural waste. Industrial organic chemicals, oils
and solvents and persistent pesticides can also contaminate soil.
The assessment of the suitability of a waste and the receiving soil
for disposal to land should take account of the:
· Waste degradation rates and the release
of nutrients and other substances during its breakdown.
· Chemical form of the element and its
likely interaction with the soil, given the pH values and the existing ‘background’
concentration of the element in the receiving soil.
· Effect of the element upon soil
organisms and processes.
· Timing of application.
· Effects upon plant growth.
· Possibility of uptake of potentially
harmful substance to edible parts of plants.
· Effects upon livestock, by consumption
of stored and conserved crops, grazing herbage or direct ingestion of
· Possible effects on the human food
Non-agricultural wastes should not be applied to agricultural land
unless they are beneficial to the soil or growing crop and should be applied
only when ground and weather conditions are suitable. All proposed applications
of non-agricultural wastes to agricultural land must be beneficial to
agriculture and meet the terms of the exemption in the Waste Management
(Exemptions from Licensing) (Jersey) Order 2006.
For full details see the ‘Non- Agricultural Wastes and other
Imported Organic Wastes’ section of This Code. It is also recommended that the
Sludge (Use in Agriculture) Regulations 1989 (as amended) and the Safe
Sludge Matrix 2001 is complied with if sewage sludge is to be applied to
6 Storing and handling
livestock slurries, manures and other organic materials
livestock slurries, farmyard manure and other organic materials
important health and safety issues attached to organic manures and slurries
and you should include the handling, storage and application of farm manures
within the farm's Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (‘COSHH’)
assessments. Further guidance is available in Health and Safety Executive
slurries, farmyard manure (‘FYM’) and other organic materials are valuable
sources of organic matter and major nutrients such as nitrogen (N), phosphorus
(P), potassium (K) and sulphur (S). They also contain magnesium (Mg) and trace
elements. Using these nutrients effectively can result in considerable savings
in manufactured fertiliser use.
However, these valuable nutrients can be lost from manures and
slurries during storage and spreading, posing a water pollution risk. When
slurry and other organic material gets into water very rapid and severe oxygen
depletion of the water can result, leading to fish and invertebrate deaths for
a considerable distance downstream. Manure and slurry can also cause microbiological
contamination of inland and coastal waters and groundwater, potentially causing
a breach of environmental quality standards.
6.2 Definitions and characteristics
It is important to bear in mind the following definitions as they
determine how the defined material can and must be treated and what materials
must be collected and contained.
Livestock slurry and manure are classified by the type of stock that
produces it and the physical characteristic of the slurry and manure.
Slurry is excreta, including any liquid fraction, produced by
livestock whilst in a yard or building. It also includes any mixture consisting
wholly of or containing such excreta, bedding, feed residues, rainwater and
washings from a building or yard used by livestock, manure heap or manure
storage area, slatted building and/or weeping wall structures, or any
combination of these. Slurry has a consistency that allows it to be pumped or
discharged by gravity at any stage in the handling process. Slurry is defined
as having a dry matter (DM) content between 2% and 10%.
Solid Manure is excreta, bedding and feed residues produced by
livestock when kept in yards or buildings or manure with a high proportion of
straw in it from traditional bedded yards or solids from mechanically separated
slurry. Solid Manure is defined as having a dry matter (DM) content above 10%.
Manures can be in the form of solids, semi-solids or liquids. Solid manures can
be stacked but will produce effluent due to drainage and the leaching effect of
rainfall. Leachate from solid manures stored on yards or hard-standing will be
defined as slurry and must be collected and contained. Stores specially built
for solid manure will reduce the risk of pollution through run off and will
make it easier to handle and load.
Dirty Water is any water containing washings from a milking parlour
or farm dairy. It also includes yard washings and rainwater runoff from open
hard standing areas that have been contaminated by manure, slurry or silage.
Dirty water is defined as having a dry matter (DM) content below 2%.
and Poultry manures
These contain high levels of nitrogen that can be readily available
and extra care is required to ensure the correct rates of application are used
when applying them to agricultural land to meet crop need and reduce the
potential impact of these manures and slurries on the environment. These
manures are also subject to the closed period (between 1st November and the
following 15th January in any year) in respect of applications to land.
6.2.5 Non-agricultural wastes and other organic
Wastes and materials such as sewage sludge, compost, seaweed, waste
vegetables (including potatoes) applied to land can be valuable sources of
nutrients and organic matter but are also subject to restrictions (see Non-agricultural wastes).
6.3 Temporary field storage
· Temporary field heaps of solid manure
should be placed close to where they will be spread, and in a position where
there is no risk of run off polluting water.
· Only manure that can be stacked and
remain in situ should be temporarily stored in field heaps.
· Do not place manure heaps within 10m of
a watercourse, ditch or field drain or within 50m of a spring, well or
· Do not store organic fertiliser and other
organic material in field heaps in one place for any longer than 12 months. Do
not use the same location again for at least two years after that.
· Storing solid manure in a temporary
field heap must be in compliance with the Waste Management (Jersey) Law 2005.
6.4 Animal housing and associated Infrastructure, GHE
The type of livestock housing system affects the physical
characteristics of the manure or slurry. For instance, solid FYM is produced in
systems using straw or other bedding materials. Slurry is produced where
housing and feeding systems use little or no additional bedding materials, and
where excreta is scraped from solid floors or trodden into slats.
Some systems such as straw courts use a separate scraped feed area
to reduce straw use and these produce a combination of both FYM and slurry. All liquids produced from where livestock
are housed must be drained or scraped to a suitable collection system.
These liquids include drainage from passages and aprons used by livestock or
where slurry is scraped, contaminated wash water from milking parlours and
wash-down (dairy, pig and poultry buildings), and drainage from traditional
livestock boxes or straw yards.
Yards used for livestock, together with feed areas, will become
contaminated with slurry, bedding and feed residues. Whether these areas are
roofed or unroofed, they must be designed so that all contaminated drainage is
collected and contained.
Avoid large unroofed areas. It is also important from an economic
view that clean drainage from roofs and aprons is not allowed to enter the
slurry collection system in order to reduce the volume of slurry and dirty
water to be applied to land.
Drainage from feed areas is likely to be highly polluted and must
not be discharged to a watercourse. Although this material does not normally
contain manure or slurry, it can add to the volume of manure and slurry
Unroofed areas pose a high risk of pollution during periods of
rainfall. Where it is not feasible to direct and collect effluents into
existing storage facilities, a separate tank should be provided.
Tanks must always be appropriately sized, constructed and installed
with regard to the type of effluent being stored; and they must be properly
maintained at all times.
The drainage from milking parlours and the parlour pit must be drained
to storage tanks or the mains (if connected to the mains they require a trade
effluent consent from GHE Infrastructure). Washings from these areas will be
contaminated with milk residues, livestock excreta and cleaning chemicals. If
included in the slurry system, the volumes produced must be taken into account
in any calculation of the slurry storage capacity and land availability for
There can be occasions when it becomes necessary to dispose of milk
produced on a particular farm to that farm’s fields. This can occur when bad
weather prevents collection of milk or if milk becomes contaminated
(antibiotics, chemicals, blood etc.) or colostrum has to be disposed of from
newly calved cows.
Ideally, waste milk may be fed to livestock, but it is advisable to
first consult a specialist advisor, especially where the milk is contaminated
or where large quantities are involved.
Milk is a highly polluting substance and should never be allowed to
enter a watercourse or reservoir. Waste milk should be diluted with water or
slurry before disposing to agricultural land. Dairy washings should be
collected and stored in suitable stores. As the act of mixing milk and slurry
may give rise to lethal or explosive gases, only small quantities of waste milk
should be disposed of to the slurry system.
BOD values of milk compared to other
Biochemical oxygen demand BOD (mg/litre)
200 to 300
Precautions should be taken before spreading contaminated milk on
grazing land and advice should be sought from Environmental Protection and the
States Vet. Milk should not be applied on land/sites with a high run-off risk.
The application rate should not exceed 50m3/ha (2000 gallons/vergée)
of diluted milk.
design and operation of slurry reception tanks and channels
Where possible, keep the distance between the animal housing and
slurry storage to a minimum. Slurry can be transferred from where it is
produced to the main storage tank either directly (via slats to storage tank)
or via a suitable reception tank or channel from where it can be pumped or flow
by gravity into the main tank. The system used will depend on the site,
relative levels, type of slurry and storage used.
Slurry tank capacity should include allowance for all excreta
produced by housed livestock for a minimum of four months, any washings, dirty
water run-off and rainfall and leachate from silage stores and manure heaps.
Good management is essential to prevent overflow. To reduce the risk
of overflow and ease operational management, a larger tank may be better. Tanks
should be sited to minimise pollution risk in the event of overflow: they must
be sited more than 10m from any inland or coastal waters and must be at least
50m from any spring, well or borehole.
A freeboard of at least 300mm must be maintained in all tanks (below
and above ground). Slurry should never be allowed to rise to rim levels as this
can cause catastrophic failure of the store.
The calculation of the minimum size for any slurry storage facility
must include provision for:
· All livestock excreta produced during
housed periods or at other times of the year (e.g. for dairy cattle).
· All other effluents directed to the
system including dairy wash water, contaminated yard areas and any silage
· Rainfall and freeboard on the storage
design of slurry tanks
The design and installation must comply with the constructional
standards described by BS 5502 on Buildings and Structures for Agriculture
(Part 50). The base and walls of the slurry storage tank, any effluent tank,
channels and reception pits, and the walls of any pipes must be capable of
withstanding characteristic loads, shall be protected against corrosion and,
with proper maintenance, must have a working life of at least 20 years.
Where a channel or reception pit connects by pipe to another
container of lesser capacity which can overflow, two valves must be fitted in
the pipe to minimise the risk of overflow should a blockage occur preventing
closure of one valve. These valves must be kept locked when not in use and
should be spaced at least 1m apart to minimise the risk of both valves becoming
jammed open at the same time. Valves should be checked regularly and maintained
in full working order. All channels and reception pits must be covered or
fenced. Access openings for pumps and pipes should be guarded to prevent
accidents. Covers must be designed to carry the loads to which they will be
subjected. Access covers which can be easily opened or lifted should be kept
The design of any livestock storage system must take into account
rainfall that enters the system and contributes to the volume to be handled.
Both 'long term' and 'short term storm' rainfall events should be taken into
account, to ensure adequate storage provision. This is to ensure that land
application takes place when field conditions are suitable and the risk of
pollution from the operation is minimised. Conditions which will minimise
pollution risk also minimise field damage.
construction of slurry tanks
The contractor must be experienced in the use of concrete and other
materials used in the construction process. The relevant design requirements
are listed in the relevant sections in BS 5502, BS 8007 and BS 8110. When
considering substantially enlarging or reconstructing storage tanks, the
resulting structure must satisfy the above standards and receive planning
consent. It will therefore be essential to seek professional guidance prior to
making a commitment to any work.
management and operation of slurry systems
The person having custody or control of the management of any
facility for the handling and storage of livestock manures and slurries must
· Good operational standards are adopted
(e.g. maintaining required freeboard).
· Maintenance is carried out to retain the
minimum performance requirements for at least 20 years (or the operational life
of the store).
The following operational actions should be carried out with all
· Check tank storage levels at a frequency
appropriate to its capacity, especially those receiving drainage from
contaminated yards or uncovered silos where rainfall can fill the tank very
· Carry out regular spot checks at points
where leakage may occur, such as joints in pipework connected to pumps.
· Check that external drains are running
freely and are not contaminated.
· Check automatic pumping systems and
carry out routine maintenance. Pumping systems which can be removed from a tank
for inspection are most convenient and essential in situations where poisonous gasses
may be present.
· Check freeboard in tanks particularly
after periods of heavy rain.
· Check parts of systems which may freeze
during cold spells.
· Check tanks for the separation of
contents which may lead to the build-up of solids and loss of storage capacity.
Above ground tanks require regular attention where surface drying can cause
· Check all safety hatches after handling
operations. Empty and inspect all tanks (taking appropriate safety measures)
prior to animal housing.
· Persons having custody or control of
slurry are responsible for informing those individuals who act on their behalf of
the precautions to be taken to avoid overflow or spillage and the consequences
of causing pollution.
The Department of the Environment must be contacted in
the event of a pollution incident on its pollution report line tel: 709535.
All staff must be aware of the action to take in any emergency.
Appropriate training in the proper use of facilities and associated
equipment is essential. The dangers likely to be encountered from moving parts
on equipment and the presence of poisonous gases particularly from tanks within
buildings during mixing of slurry must be emphasised.
In slatted courts, livestock housed over the slats should be removed
and the building well ventilated prior to and during slurry agitation. If
possible, within buildings avoid the storage of silage effluent and slurry in
the same tank at the same time as this can increase the risk of poisonous
Harmful gases are generated at slurry stores and these
have been responsible for both human and animal deaths.
It is essential that controls for pumps be situated so
that they can be started and stopped without the operator entering buildings
which may contain harmful gases.
Stock or humans must not access buildings until
appropriate actions have been taken to prevent risk of harmful effects. Such
buildings should be well ventilated before entering.
If it is absolutely essential to enter an area which may
be contaminated by gas, operators should wear either an approved
self-contained or airline breathing apparatus. Full training must be given in
the use of this equipment before it is used. A notice should be erected at
slurry stores warning of the danger of poisonous gas and that stores should
not be entered without taking the recommended precautions.
maintenance of slurry tanks
Practical and safe methods must be employed to allow all facilities
to be inspected regularly for any signs of failure e.g. damage to surface
coatings on steel and concrete structures, damage and failure of store walls
and floor, leakage in pipes, connections and fittings.
The following is a suggested procedure which should be carried out
at least at annual intervals:
· Inspect walls and floors for cracking
and surface erosion. Only the exposed external surfaces of slurry tanks should
be inspected (see above).
· Inspect all drains and channels for
damage or deterioration.
· Check that all channels and pipes are
· Check all safety arrangements.
· List all repairs required and prepare a
timetable to execute the work. This may involve diverting slurry to other
storage or providing temporary arrangements.
Planning permission must be obtained with regard to any proposed
substantial enlargement or reconstruction.
6.4.8 Limiting pathogenic micro-organisms in
slurry and manures
Manures can contain pathogenic micro-organisms (e.g. E. coli O157, Salmonella, Listeria, Campylobacter, Cryptosporidium and Giardia)
which may cause food-borne illness. Factors such as the age, diet and
management of animals, as well as seasonal influences, affect the number of
micro-organisms in manures.
The management and handling of farm manures, particularly the length
of time they are stored, are important factors in the survival of
micro-organisms. The method and timing of manure applications to land can
affect the length of time that pathogens survive in the soil, and the
likelihood of them getting onto food crops. In order to reduce any risks of
food-borne illness resulting from the use of farm manures, there is a need for
To reduce the risk of transferring disease to healthy stock, pasture
should not be grazed for at least one month after spreading slurry or manure or
until all visible signs of the solids have disappeared.
Pathogenic micro-organisms usually die out over time. The rate at
which this happens depends on environmental conditions. In some conditions,
they can survive for several months following the spreading of farm manures or
deposition during grazing. They may also be present in dirty water, yard runoff
and leachates from stored manures.
Pathogens can be killed either in the manure itself or after
application to land. The main factors that will lead to a reduction in numbers
· Soil pH.
· Soil microbes.
7 Organic fertiliser management
planning and application to land
manure and organic waste management planning
It is important to ensure that anyone who uses or plans to use fertiliser
on any land in Jersey as part of their business activities or operations
follows a written organic fertiliser management plan and nutrient management
plan unless they are exempted. This can be checked by reference to the Water
Pollution (Water Management) (Jersey) Order 2020. Nutrient inputs to land
from organic materials need to be balanced with the inputs from inorganic fertilisers
and plant requirements.
resource value of organic materials
Livestock slurries and manures are a valuable resource. If correctly
applied, they can save money spent on inorganic fertilisers as well as
protecting the environment and adding organic matter to the soil. However,
because of this nutrient content they can also be polluting if not applied
correctly or accounted for in the nutrient management plan.
The nutrient value of manure or slurry should be estimated from
published data (RB209) or supported by representative sampling and analysis of
the manures and slurries from time to time. Dilution from rainfall, washings
and bedding materials must be taken into account.
Before agreeing to accept non-agriculturally derived
organic wastes, a farmer must carefully assess whether these additional
nutrient inputs can be utilised effectively to give a ‘benefit to agriculture
or ecological improvement’ without causing a pollution risk. Advice should be
obtained in writing from a FACTS qualified advisor or equivalent.
The DEFRA publication RB209 provides detailed information on the
nutrient requirements of crops and grass, as well as the nutrient value of
different types of manures and slurries and chemical fertilisers. Soil analysis
for pH, P, K and Mg must be carried out at least every 4 years to assess the
nutrient needs of the crops in the fields you are planning to apply organic
material or fertiliser to.
Livestock manures and slurries should be applied in amounts such
that the nutrient content, particularly of N and P, can be used by growing
crops. Excessive application rates can result in high N and P concentrations in
the soil and an increased risk of water pollution.
All applications of waste materials to soils should be in quantities
and at frequencies which convey positive benefits without causing pollution.
Advice, from a FACTS qualified advisor (or equivalent), should be sought on
what application rate is appropriate for each waste material, each soil and
7.2 Maximum application
rates of organic manures and slurries
Livestock manures and slurries are a valuable asset and should be
applied to agricultural land in accordance with the recommendations set out in
· The maximum application of livestock
manure to land must not exceed 170 Kg per hectare of total nitrogen in any
· The maximum application of organic
manures including non –agricultural
wastes and/or compost, to agricultural land must not exceed a total
nitrogen content of more than 250 Kg per
hectare of total nitrogen in any 12-month period.
· However, if the only organic fertiliser
to be applied is compost then the
compost may be applied in levels of up to 500kg of nitrogen per hectare over
any 24-month period as long as it –
a. Does not contain livestock manure;
b. Is applied as mulch or worked into the ground
c. Is produced to the British Standards Institute specification for
composted materials PAS100 or equivalent standard; and
d. The Minister has given written permission for the application.
· High readily available nitrogen manures
and slurries must not be applied to agricultural land during the closed period
(between 1st November and the following 15th of January in any year) except
with the written permission of the Minister.
· The amount and frequency of applications
should not be more than the nutrient requirements of the growing crop and take
account of the time of application and the residual value in the soil from the
· The organic manures and slurry
application should be timed to minimise leaching.
· Any application of organic waste to
agricultural land must be included in an Organic Fertiliser Management Plan and
Nutrient Management Plan.
You must ensure the application of organic manures does not exceed
250 Kg per hectare of total nitrogen in any 12-month period of which only 170
Kg per hectare of total nitrogen may be from livestock manure (unless material
being applied to the land is compost only as specified above).
The table below, Surface application rates in
optimum conditions* shows the maximum surface application rates which
can be applied when soil and weather conditions are suitable to avoid run-off
and minimise the risk of pollution. The normal rate of slurry application is
generally between 25-30m3/ha (1000 – 1200 gallons/vergée).
126.96.36.199 Surface application rates in optimum conditions*
m3/ha (2000 gallon/vergée)
m3/ha (1000 – 1200 gallon/vergée)
tonne/ha (9 tonne/vergée)
tonne/ha (5.4 – 9 tonne/vergée)
tonne/ha (2.7 tonne/vergée)
to 15 tonne/ha (0.9 – 2.7 tonne/vergée)
m 3/ha (2000 gallon/vergée)
(1000 – 1200 gallon/vergée)
rates should be used in the event of sub-optimum or difficult conditions and
may also be required to ensure that crop nutrient requirements are not
Organic manure applications in any 12-month period to any field must not
result in the total nitrogen applied exceeding 30 Kg (60 units) total nitrogen
per vergée or 170 kg total nitrogen per hectare.
Repeat applications should not be made for a period of at least 3
weeks. This is a necessary requirement to allow the crop to utilise the
available nutrients. Soil microbes breakdown and assist in the incorporation of
slurry and manure. More frequent applications would smother herbage and
saturate the soil, increasing the chances of leaching and run-off.
Where there is insufficient suitable land for application on the farm,
alternative options, such as waste treatment or the use of other suitable land
close by, will have to be considered. A record of the type of organic manure,
application rate, total volume and date of application must be supplied to all
other users of the field to ensure the nutrients they contain are taken into
account when applying fertiliser to the next crop.
188.8.131.52 Typical leaching losses of available nitrogen from a slurry
losses of available nitrogen (%)
Nitrate leaching from application of farmyard manure is far lower,
as most of its nitrogen is not readily available rather than an immediately
soluble form. This makes the timing of the spreading operation less critical.
organic manures and slurries
Farmers and contractors should be aware of legal requirements and
willing to follow the guidance in this Code. Persons carrying out spreading
activities on farm should be suitably trained, qualified and competent to carry
out the operation involved. Best practise is to GPS to calibrate and monitor
applications. It is also important to carry out a risk assessment before
spreading organic manures and slurries to assess the risk of causing water
pollution and to continue to assess the risk during spreading.
organic manures and slurries near watercourses
apply organic fertiliser to land that is:
· Within 50 metres of a borehole, well or
· Within 10 metres of any inland water.
· Compacted on the surface.
· Covered with snow.
· Used as a loafing paddock or is a heavily grazed field.
You must undertake a risk assessment to avoid run off and
pollution from any spreading activity. Keep accurate records of all organic
wastes applied to agricultural land.
The above distances may have to be increased on certain sites to
reduce risk e.g. from wind blow or field slope. An untreated strip at least 10m
wide should be left beside all watercourses, to reduce the risk of direct
contamination by run-off.
Field dirty water irrigation systems should be operated so that
there is no possibility of the spread pattern reaching within 10m of a
near springs, wells and boreholes
There are serious public health risks if harmful chemicals and
micro-organisms (such as E. coli
O157, Cryptosporidium) enter into
water supplies. This is the reason why livestock manures, slurries and other
organic manures must not be applied within 50m of a spring, well or borehole.
Springs, wells and boreholes for drinking should be adequately fenced off to
prevent faecal contamination from grazing livestock. If a stream is
particularly vulnerable to poaching or pollution, consider fencing it off and
providing livestock with alternative crossings or drinking water.
near domestic dwellings and public buildings
Air pollution from livestock manures and slurries must be considered
whenever there is a risk of public nuisance caused by odours or a potential
risk to public health from harmful organisms. This applies to fixed installations
such as slurry stores and manure stores, as well as to land spreading
operations. When spreading, use low trajectory equipment.
Be a 'good neighbour'. Spreading of livestock slurry and manures
should be done sensitively and avoided where possible:
· Close to domestic or public buildings.
· At weekends or public holidays.
· When the wind direction is towards
· In areas designated for their
· During the hours of darkness, unless
this is not otherwise practicable.
· Close to public access areas, footpaths,
· On windy days.
7.3.4 The correct soil conditions
The quantity of liquid slurry
that can be applied to an area without causing surface run-off is dependent on
soil type and conditions including structure, moisture content, infiltration
rate and surface gradient. As the permeability and infiltration rate of a soil
decrease as the surface gradient increases, the risk of surface run off is
increased. To minimise this risk, liquid slurry should not be applied at rates
greater than the infiltration capacity of the soil and at no time during
periods when a soil is waterlogged. This applies to both surface application
and soil injection methods. The use of heavy, fully laden tankers in wet conditions
increases the risk of soil compaction and damage, which will reduce the
infiltration capacity of the soil and increase the potential for run-off.
Spreading slurries and manures at a time when conditions are not
ideal also costs money later, in terms of remedial works to overcome
compaction/tracking and the associated crop yield reduction or reseeding
on sloping ground
The application of slurry and manure on sloping ground should be
carried out with care to prevent the risk of run off entering a watercourse.
Also safe-working practices associated with vehicle operation on slopes must be
followed at all times. Factors to consider include:
· Any watercourse at the bottom of slope.
· Soil type and condition.
· Weather conditions (before, during and
· Application rates.
· Presence of buffer area.
· Avoiding contamination of growing crops
in neighbouring fields.
7.3.6 Use of buffer strips
Where livestock has ready access to a watercourse, water can become
polluted with animal waste. The banks of a watercourse can also become eroded
or ‘poached’ leaving them open to erosion by the watercourse. Fencing a
watercourse from livestock access and allowing vegetated buffer strip to
establish will protect both water quality and the water margin. An alternative
to allowing livestock to drink from a stream or pond can be provided by a
suitable sized water trough or siphoning system connected to a drinking bowl.
In addition, buffer strips can filter pollutants running from the
field. In an intensively farmed situation a buffer strip will also act as a
place of refuge for wildlife and provide connections to other habitats.
Applications for fencing to exclude livestock from a watercourse and provide
them with an alternative water source will be considered for financial support
under the Rural Support Scheme (RSS).
7.3.7 Matching slurry and manure production
pattern to land availability
A land availability schedule
should be matched to a slurry and manure production schedule to ensure storage
facilities on the farm are adequate and that organic manures can be utilised
efficiently. An account of slurry (and/or manure) being collected should then
be compared to the amount which can be viably spread taking account of all
crop, stock and field constraints.
use of meteorological data
Check the forecast before spreading slurry or organic materials. A
field that is normally suitable for slurry application and is a low pollution
risk could become unsuitable and a high pollution risk following heavy
rainfall. Check local weather forecasting information prior to proposed
direction and force
Wind direction and force will dictate days when spreading should be
avoided to prevent air pollution from drift and odour affecting residential and
other sensitive areas.
Full account should be taken of the weather (particularly prolonged
wet weather) prior to any intended application being made and to the consequent
field conditions. Effect on the risk assessment should be considered.
Flooding of low-lying fields adjacent to watercourses can occur at
certain times of the year. Application to these areas should be avoided when
there is a risk of flooding; consideration should be given to previous flood
during periods of snow
Liquid and semi-liquid livestock slurries should not be applied to
ground with snow cover, as there is a high risk of run-off during the
of application methods for organic fertilisers
Tanker systems must never be over-filled to avoid risk of spillage
during filling, transit and unloading. Closure of valves should be checked
after filling and emptying to prevent leakage during travel. The operator must
determine and set the application rate taking full account of all the factors
The discharge system should produce a low trajectory-spreading
pattern which will improve application accuracy, minimise the risk of odour
nuisance and losses of ammonia to the environment. Excessive soil compaction
by the tanker will be reduced by reducing the load on each wheel and by fitting
larger tyres to spread the load. Avoid spreading when the soil is wet and at
risk of being compacted or rutted.
Irrigation systems (including low rate irrigation systems) require
regular checking to ensure automatic movement and speed of mobile irrigators is
correct to avoid over-application. Application rate must be selected taking
account of field conditions and crop cover. It is difficult and/or often
impractical to achieve low enough application rates with static irrigators.
The responsibility for operation of the system must be given to a
competent person who must check the field for signs of over-application, e.g.
ponding, run-off, etc. Mobile irrigators must shut off automatically at the end
of each run. Any water used for flushing should be treated in the same manner
as the slurry and manure. Operators must be aware of potential odour nuisance
and take any necessary action to minimise this.
Injectors can be supplied by tanker or umbilical systems. Soil type
and structure, stones, slope and stage of crop growth will often limit the
circumstances when and where injection can be successfully carried out.
Applications of injected slurry should take account of the soil conditions and
N required. In areas where there is a risk, work the injector across the slope,
rather than up and down.
You should only employ agricultural contractors to spread slurry and
manure to land that are competent and appropriately trained, aware of legal
requirements and are prepared to follow the guidance in this Code. Always agree
beforehand what responsibilities and measures the contractor will need to take
to avoid pollution and odour nuisance and provide them with all essential
information specific to your land. They also need to keep and provide you with
a record of what has been applied and where.
of waste slurry
Normally following the practices described earlier in this Section should
be sufficient to prevent or at least minimise environmental pollution and waste
treatment systems will not be required. On some farms however, slurry handling
and storage problems may be eased by separation of the solid and liquid
fractions of slurries by using mechanical separators such as screen or belt
presses, vibrating screens or centrifuges.
The cost of providing and operating treatment systems can be high.
Before deciding if these technologies are cost effective and are a practical
solution for your farm, professional and specialist technical advice should be
sought and the Natural Environment consulted for advice on issues such as waste
licencing and discharge permitting.
8 Clamps and Silage
8.1 About silage effluent
Silage effluent is produced from any forage crop which is being
made, or has been made, into silage. It is also defined as a mixture consisting
wholly of or containing such effluent, rain or groundwater emanating from a clamp,
silage effluent collection system or drain.
It is an offence under the Water Pollution (Jersey) Law 2000 to
allow silage effluent to pollute the island’s controlled waters. Silage should
be stored in containment facilities or clamps/silos which have been constructed
to meet minimum standards for installations used for the storage of such
substances and their associated effluents. New or substantial alterations to
silage containment facilities will require planning permission to ensure they
are constructed to the correct standard.
Silage effluent is highly acidic and corrodes steel and concrete
surfaces, causing deterioration of cracks and joints in silo floors, collection
channels and tanks, making it very difficult to contain and collect all the
The volume of effluent produced depends on the moisture content of
the crop being ensiled. This in turn depends on factors such as the maturity of
the crop, the degree of wilting, the weather conditions, the use of additives
and absorbents (e.g. dried sugar beet pulp) and whether the silo is roofed or
unroofed. The peak flow of effluent normally occurs within two to three days of
ensiling the crop. Up to 50% of the total volume of effluent is produced in the
first ten days. The table below demonstrates that the typical volume of
effluent likely to be produced varies significantly with the dry matter of the
184.108.40.206 Dry matter content of grass ensiled and quantity of effluent
matter content of
of grass ensiled)
Wilting is therefore very desirable but is highly dependent on
weather conditions at the time of silage making. The ensiling of crops with a
relatively high dry matter content, such as whole crop cereals, results in less
effluent production. Farmers should always be prepared to contain, collect,
store and dispose of any effluent and should be aware that the use of some
silage additives tends to increase the amount of effluent produced. In a wet
year, very high volumes of effluent have to be dealt with and even greater care
The objective should be to reduce the volume of effluent to a
minimum. Rainwater falling directly on the silo cover should be diverted and
drained separately from the silage effluent if practicable.
When the silo is being used, rainwater falling on the floor will
become polluted and must be collected. A roof over the silo with an independent
rainwater drainage system will minimise the quantities of effluent which
require to be handled. Care should be taken by directing rainwater through a
sealed system to a suitable outfall to ensure roof drainage does not become
The regular monitoring of collection tank levels should be
undertaken at all times but with greater frequency during the first ten days
following ensiling to contend with peak flow rates of effluent, and during
periods of wet weather. Many factors influence effluent flow, such as depth of
silage, efficiency of drainage within the silo and the use of certain
additives. Tank levels must be checked throughout the year especially in the
autumn/winter and not just during silage making. All contaminated water must be
collected and by-pass systems must never be used.
management and maintenance of silage facilities
The Water Pollution (Jersey) Law 2000 provides for the control of
pollution in Jersey waters including coastal waters, inland waters and
groundwater. New and substantial alterations to silos are subject to planning and
building control permission to ensure they meet required construction standards.
Officers from the Natural Environment have powers to enter premises where water
pollution is suspected and inspect existing structures to ensure they do not
pose a significant risk of pollution.
All silos, effluent tanks and any associated pipes and channels must
be designed in such a way that with proper maintenance, they will prevent
silage effluent from causing a risk of water pollution. All parts of the silo
must be sited at least 10m from a watercourse, including permeable drains (e.g.
field drains) and open ditches, to which any escaping effluent could enter.
Silage stored in freestanding field heaps should have an impermeable
base and an effluent containment system. They should be sited at least 10m from
a watercourse, including permeable drains (e.g. field drains) and open ditches,
to which any escaping effluent could enter.
All new or substantially amended silage containment systems must
comply with BS5502 standards.
Farmers should check and empty their effluent collection systems as
often as is necessary in the light of their own circumstances and experience.
Additionally, farmers should take advantage of other appropriate storage
facilities elsewhere on the farm e.g. slurry store, for the storage of silage
effluent as part of an Organic Fertiliser Management Plan and/or Pollution
If possible, a farmer should try to have an effluent tank which has
a capacity in excess of the minimum requirement. An effective alarm system,
ideally with audible and visible alarm (i.e. warning lights), will provide an
early indication that tanks are almost full, thus avoiding overflow. For
unroofed silos, it is important to take account of the volume of surface water
run-off and plan accordingly.
It is important to remember that effluent can also be produced from
other livestock feeds such as maize silage and whole crop cereals, thus making
it essential that such effluent is collected and not allowed to escape and cause
Best practice dictates that two aspects of the effective management
of a silage making operation (in addition to health and safety) must be
· Maintenance of silos to retain minimum
· Management of a silo at all times but
particularly during periods of maximum effluent generation to confirm that
there are no leakages, that the drainage system is working effectively and that
the tank is not allowed to overfill.
The silo drainage system and effluent tank must be carefully
inspected for any signs of surface corrosion, cracking of concrete or fractured
The following procedure should be carried out each year immediately
after the silo is emptied:
· Empty and, when safe to do so, visually
check the effluent tank.
· Do not enter the tank, as poisonous gasses
may be present.
· If it is necessary to enter for repair
purposes, seek specialist advice on safety requirements.
· Clean any areas which cannot be clearly
· Inspect walls, floors and wall floor
joints for cracking or surface corrosion.
· Reseal all sealed joints where the
jointing material has been damaged.
· Inspect all drains and channels for
· Check that all channels and pipework are
· Check all safety arrangements.
· List all repairs required and prepare a
timetable to execute the work.
There are often only a few weeks between silos being emptied and
refilled. As many materials require time to cure before being exposed to
effluent, plan ahead to ensure the silo is emptied completely and that there is
sufficient time before silage making begins to properly complete any works as
soon as practicable.
It is essential that frequent checks be made to ensure that the
drainage system is free running and that the effluent tank does not overflow.
The design criteria of BS5502 require that there are internal drains
along the bottom of the walls to reduce pressure. Where the silage is made as a
wedge or grass ramps are used, care must be taken that the ramp does not extend
beyond the silo's drainage system, to ensure that the effluent is contained.
The filling of unroofed silos requires planning if the maximum
quantity of rainwater is to be diverted from the effluent tank. The aim is to
dome or shape the top of the silo so that water falling on the cover is
directed away from the working end of the pit. To achieve this in solid walled
silos, the covering sheet should extend over and out from the end or one side
of the silo. It is important that silo covers are properly secured in place by
the use of weights and are regularly inspected to ensure they remain intact.
While any silage remains in the pit, all effluent and contaminated
rainwater (floor, cover and silage) must be collected and disposed of. When
empty, the silo may be washed down but on no account should wash waters be
discharged to a watercourse.
All adjacent ditches, streams or watercourses should be checked
regularly (preferably daily) for signs of pollution, particularly when silage
effluent is being produced just below the point of discharge of the surface
water drainage system from the farm. If any pollution is found, immediate
action should be taken to remedy the situation. The Natural Environment should
also be notified using the emergency phone number.
8.4 Disposal of silage
Silage effluent has a Biochemical Oxygen Demand (BOD) of up to 200
times that of raw sewage. Although aeration treatment can significantly reduce
the BOD strength of silage effluent, it cannot be treated to a safe level for
discharge to a watercourse.
BOD is a measure of how much a substance reduces oxygen
in the watercourse whilst breaking down. If silage effluent is allowed to
enter a watercourse it rapidly strips oxygen from the water, killing fish,
plants and other aquatic life.
Silage effluent should be diluted by a minimum of 1:1 with water and
spread safely on land. The application rate should be determined by the land
suitability and crop cover and should never exceed a maximum rate of 9m3
or 1980 gallons per vergée (50m3/ha or 4500 gallons/acre) in any 12-month
period. It is advised to apply at a lower rate to avoid scorching and in that
case any repeat application should not be made within 3 weeks. The maximum rate
of application should also be reduced if the soil has been compacted.
Silage effluent is also a significant source of nutrients, with a
high proportion of these nutrients readily available to the growing crop. An
analysis of the nutrient content should be carried out and this should be
accounted for in your Farm Manure and Crop Nutrition Plans and in determining
Soakaways are not an acceptable method of effluent disposal and must
not be used. Fresh silage effluent can be a valuable feedstuff on which livestock
thrive. Increasingly farmers are appreciating this and a growing number are
collecting and storing silage effluent to feed back to their livestock.
wastes and other imported organic
9.1 About non-agricultural
wastes and other imported organic wastes
The main non-agricultural organic wastes applied to agricultural
land arise from sewage treatment, water treatment and compost producers.
Although many of these wastes potentially have valuable fertilizing and soil
conditioning properties, their storage and application under unsuitable
conditions or at inappropriate rates can give rise to pollution and
contamination of soil, water or air.
This section recommends appropriate management practices for waste
producers, contractors and farmers so as to avoid or minimise the risk of
pollution, while enabling sustainable agricultural practices to continue.
Application to agricultural land should be carried out as a method
of beneficially recycling nutrients to the soil and not as a method of waste
Persons carrying out spreading activities on farm should be suitably
trained, qualified and competent to carry out the operation involved. Farmers
and contractors should be aware of legal requirements and willing to follow the
guidance in this Code.
All applications of organic wastes brought in to be spread on
farmland should be included in the calculations within your Organic Fertiliser Management
Plan and your Nutrient Management Plan.
The spreading of non-agricultural waste and other imported organic
wastes on land has to be carried out in compliance with the Waste Management
(Jersey) Law 2005. The waste can only be spread if it is beneficial to
agriculture. Any resulting contamination of controlled waters could be an
offence under the Water Pollution (Jersey) Law 2000.
The Waste Management (Exemptions from Licensing) (Jersey) Order 2006
allows certain non-agricultural wastes and other imported organic wastes to be
applied to agricultural land. The operations do not need a waste management
licence but are controlled under exemptions detailed in the above Order.
If you are unclear about any of the requirements, contact
the Natural Environment.
Spreading waste without being able to demonstrate that it is
beneficial to agriculture may be an offence under the Waste Management (Jersey)
Farmers receiving non-agricultural wastes and other imported organic
wastes should establish and agree what responsibilities and measures the waste
provider or contractor will need to take to avoid pollution. Best practice
guidelines dictate that producers, carriers and disposers of waste must ensure
· Waste is not kept, treated or disposed
· An adequate written description of waste
accompanies the transfer of waste.
· The waste is held securely and does not
· The waste is only passed to persons
authorised to receive it.
9.2 Maximum application
rates of non-agricultural wastes and other imported organic wastes
Any application of organic waste to agricultural land must be
included in an Organic Fertiliser Management Plan and Nutrient Management Plan.
You must ensure the total nitrogen applied from all organic manures does not
exceed 250 kg per hectare of total nitrogen in any 12-month period of
which only 170 kg per hectare of total nitrogen may be from livestock manure
However, if the only organic fertiliser to be applied is compost
then the compost may be applied in levels of up to 500 kg of nitrogen per
hectare over any 24-month period as long as –
a. It does not contain livestock manure;
b. It is applied as mulch or worked into the ground
c. It is produced to the British Standards Institute specification
for composted materials PAS100 or equivalent standard; and
d. The Minister has given written permission for the application.
You must keep accurate records of all organic wastes applied to
agricultural land, undertake a risk assessment to avoid run off and pollution
from any spreading activity using the guidelines in this code.
9.3 Storage of
non-agricultural waste and other imported organic wastes
Wastes should be removed from premises in a timely manner for
appropriate disposal or recycling and not left indefinitely to accumulate.
Storage sites for organic wastes should be fenced to exclude
livestock and should be located a suitable distance away from residential
areas. Wastes stored while waiting to be applied to land (and waste being
applied to land) can cause a nuisance such as obnoxious smells. It is therefore
essential to act as a good neighbour taking into account wind direction, slope,
and soil type and field conditions before siting a waste store or applying
waste to land.
To minimise the risk of causing water pollution when storing in
temporary locations, you must:
· Store material close to where it will be
spread and in a position where there is no risk of run off polluting water.
· Only store organic material that can be
stacked and remain in situ.
· Locate heaps over 10m away from a
watercourse, ditch or field drain and 50m away from a spring, well or borehole.
· Avoid storing organic material in field
heaps in one place for any longer than 12 months and then avoid using the same
location again for at least two years.
· Organic wastes, other than sewage
sludge, intended to be spread on land for agricultural benefit must be on the
land intended to be used for spreading.
9.4 More about other
organic materials and waste
9.4.1 Vegetable wastes
These are commonly spread to land. However, there is a risk of
introducing pests and diseases, such as potato brown rot, potato ring rot and
potato cyst nematode, through the spreading of waste derived from ‘imported’
agricultural or horticultural produce to arable land. Guidance on methods to
minimise plant health risks by the management of waste from the commercial
handling of certain types of plant produce is provided in the Code of Practice
for the Management of Agricultural and Horticultural Waste.
Animal processing wastes are tightly regulated and are not suitable
for spreading to land. The land-spreading of unprocessed abattoir waste,
including blood is also prohibited.
The use of sewage sludge on farmland in Jersey must be in compliance
with best practice as set out in the UK Sludge (Use in Agriculture) Regulations
1989 (as amended) and the associated Sewage sludge on farmland: code of
practice for England, Wales and Northern Ireland (Updated June 2017). These are
also known as ‘The Sludge Regulations’, which are designed to control the
build-up of Potentially Toxic Elements (PTEs) in soil and restrict the
planting, grazing and harvesting of certain crops following the application of
Further guidance on the application of sewage sludge to farmland is
provided in ‘The Safe Sludge Matrix 2001’ (an agreement between the UK water
industry and the British Retail Consortium on sludge use). Responsibility rests
with the producer of the sludge for compliance with The Sludge Regulations in
regard to the analytical testing of the sludge. Farmers should not allow
spreading without this having been done.
The only sewage sludge provider in Jersey is the Infrastructure, GHE
who will analyse the sewage sludge and the soil in each field prior to
application whilst maintaining detailed records of applications of all sludge
The composting of biodegradable controlled waste on
agricultural land is exempted under Article 3, The Waste Management (Exemptions
from Licensing) (Jersey) Order 2006. The maximum quantity being composted at
any time under the exemption must not exceed 1000 cubic metres, unless agreed
by the Waste Regulator, GHE. The above exemption applies only if composting takes
place where the waste is produced or the compost is to be used or at any other
place that is occupied by the person producing the waste or using the compost.
Composting operations must be carried out in a way that does not
endanger human health or harm the environment or present a risk of pollution of
9.5 Determining the
suitability of wastes for land application
with high nutrient content
Wastes which contain significant quantities of nutrients may have
valuable fertilizing properties. The rate and timing of application of waste
must be matched to the nutrient requirements of the crop. If this is exceeded,
then the operation will be classed as waste disposal rather than fertilisation.
To be of fertiliser value, at least part of the nutrient content should be
available or become available for plant uptake within 12 months of application.
Some non-agricultural wastes contain other important nutrients (e.g.
sulphur and magnesium) or a range of trace elements. If, however, a trace
element deficiency has been diagnosed, it is important to apply a specific
treatment because the trace element content of most non-agricultural wastes is
generally insufficient to correct a deficiency.
The Fertiliser Manual RB209 provides detailed information on the
nutrient requirements of crops and grass, as well as the fertilizing value of
different types of manures, slurries and other inorganic fertilisers.
Chemical analyses of the waste usually measure the total quantities
of nutrients they contain. However, the effectiveness or availability of these
nutrients for crop uptake must be assessed before the fertiliser value of the
imported waste can be calculated. Certain wastes with a high C: N ratio may not
initially release any of its nitrogen for plant uptake as a result of a
temporary locking-up of plant available N (immobilisation).
value, pH and salinity
Wastes such as lime sludge can have a high liming (neutralising)
value which makes the waste a useful liming material for acid soils. Care must
be taken however to avoid raising the soil pH too high through excessive
applications as this may lock-up some trace elements. The best practice
guidelines advise against the spreading of sewage sludge on soils with a pH
less than 5.0.
The application of wastes which have a high level of salinity or
acidity can result in damage to soils and crops as well as causing the risk of
9.5.3 Soil conditioning
Certain non-agricultural wastes can act as a soil conditioner and may
also add useful amounts of organic matter to the soil which may improve soil
structure and increase the water holding capacity. However, such improvements
to soil conditions will only be significant if regular and well managed
dressings of bulky and highly organic wastes are made to a low organic matter
soil. Best practice guidelines should be followed so that soil organic matter
levels are maintained through appropriate practices, including optimising the
use of organic manures by basing rates of application on soil and crop needs.
with a high biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) and chemical oxygen demand (COD)
Wastes with a high BOD or COD will be highly polluting if allowed to
enter a watercourse by seepage or run-off. Application of such wastes can also
result in a temporary soil oxygen depletion leading to poor plant growth. You
must take reasonable steps to manage such wastes.
9.5.5 Consideration of contaminants and pathogens
The amount of PTEs (see below), organic contaminants and pathogens,
and environmental risks of any particular waste type can vary greatly from one
waste producer to another. There can also be great variability in the analysis
on a monthly basis for any particular waste producer. Farmers should seek
up-to-date and representative analysis from the waste producer (or waste
contractor) and seek agronomic and environmental advice. It is important that
the type of waste and rate of application are kept for each field.
Check the ‘The Safe Sludge Matrix’, Red Tractor, LEAF or any other
quality assurance schemes your farm adheres to together with your produce buyer
before using non-agricultural wastes, as there may be commercial consequences.
9.5.6 Potentially toxic elements (PTEs)
Certain wastes such as those from sewage works, distilleries etc.
can have high levels of metals and must be used with caution. It is strongly
recommended that application of non-agricultural wastes should be made at a
rate which does not exceed the levels specified for heavy metal loadings as
given in The Sludge Regulations.
9.5.7 Organic contaminants
Wastes from some industrial processes may contain significant
quantities of other potentially toxic organic substances, antibiotics or
residual pesticides and must not be applied to agricultural land. It is,
therefore, essential that full details of the waste is assessed and a
comprehensive analysis is carried out to determine if application to land is
pollution from pesticides
Reducing the pollution of water by pesticides is a key aim in
Jersey. This section of the code has been included to provide guidance to
ensure the safe use of pesticides. For more detailed information and guidance
please contact the Natural Environment and refer to the Pesticides (Jersey) Law
1991 and associated Code. There are also a number of additional voluntary
measures being taken by farmers and growers through the Action for Cleaner
Water Group initiatives. For more information contact the Natural Environment or
the Jersey Farmers Union. See 2.2 Useful Contacts, Sect. 2.2.
10.1 About pesticides
For the purposes of this Code, pesticides include crop protection
chemicals such as herbicides, fungicides, growth regulators and insecticides.
They also include substances, preparations or organisms prepared or used as
pesticides to protect plants or products from harmful organisms or pests. In
legislation some of these chemicals may be defined as ‘biocides’.
The use of pesticides is controlled in Jersey under the
Pesticides (Jersey) Law 1991 (as amended). The Law and the associated
Jersey Code of Practice are currently being reviewed (January 2020). To
ensure you have the most up to date information and guidance please contact
the Natural Environment. See Useful Contacts, Sect. 2.2.
Pesticides have the potential to damage the environment and harm wildlife
if poorly or inappropriately used. In arable farming areas in particular,
pesticides can contribute to diffuse pollution via field run-off, spray drift
and accidental spillages. Users of pesticides, and their advisers, must
therefore ensure that pesticides are used correctly.
If a pesticide is to be applied, the label recommendations must be
followed. If the application is to be made under an EAMU (extension of
authorisation for minor use), that label must be in the possession of the user.
The adoption of a Crop Protection Management Plan (CPMP) can assist in
optimising inputs and minimising risks.
10.2 Pesticide pollution
The Water Pollution (Jersey) Law 2000 contains pollution prevention
provisions and provides for offenders to be prosecuted if they pollute
‘controlled waters’. Controlled waters includes coastal waters, streams,
reservoirs, ponds (even if they are dry) and groundwater. This Water Code is a
statutory Code of Practice under Article 16 of the Water Pollution (Jersey) Law
2000. This means that the approved Code will be relevant to a defence in Law of
due diligence under Articles 15 (3), 18(4) and 18(5) of that Law.
Pesticide pollution may occur accidentally or through inappropriate
handling at any stage of use - during storage, mixing, application, or from
subsequent disposal of the dilute pesticide washings or the used containers.
If any spillage occurs, immediate action should be taken
to limit the effects and to warn others who may be affected (particularly
downstream water users) and the Water Pollution Hotline tel: 709535.
Pesticide users should be equipped for a spillage and have a
contingency plan to deal with such incidents. The two key aspects to this plan
are to have a list of all emergency contact numbers and sufficient absorbent
materials to cope with any spillage. You may also need to carry out a ‘Control
of Substances Hazardous to Health’ (COSHH) assessment. If in doubt, seek
The disposal of solid waste arising from the clean-up of spillages,
including pesticides, contaminated equipment, protective clothing and
absorbents should be arranged with a licensed waste disposal operator.
10.3 Training in pesticide
Anyone involved in the use of pesticides on a farm or holding must
have adequate training in the safe, efficient use and disposal of pesticides -
including emergency action in the event of spillages.
Holding a Certificate of Competence in the safe use of pesticides
such as the NPTC 'Certificate of Competence in the Safe use of
Pesticides’ is a statutory requirement. Training in Jersey is undertaken
by several local providers. Please phone the Agricultural Inspectorate at the Natural
Environment for more details.
Farmers and growers are not allowed to retain products that are no
longer approved for use. Also, they have to carry out spray operations on
approved crops only, and whilst the Jersey Code is being developed, follow the UK
Green Code using the pesticide at the
correct dosage levels and leaving sufficient ‘buffer zones’ so that the spray
does not enter watercourses. Records including product, application rate, crop,
field and date of use must be maintained.
10.4 Sustainable use of
There are increasing demands on farmers and growers to apply
pesticides only where they are justified. Furthermore, to minimise their use,
pesticides should comprise part of an integrated control programme using
alternative control methods wherever possible. An integrated approach reduces
pesticide use and associated environmental risks. A note of the reason or
justification for pesticide use forms part of many quality assurance schemes
(e.g. through being asked to prepare a Crop Protection Management Plan) and is
good practice for every farmer and grower.
The UK Sustainable Use Regulations requires operators to ensure
pesticide use is as low (both in volume applied and frequency) as reasonably
practicable in certain areas such as infrastructure close to surface and
groundwater, areas used by the general public and vulnerable groups, near
healthcare facilities, in conservation areas and areas used or accessed by
agricultural workers. Guidance on the Sustainable Use of Pesticides is
available from the HSE website.
In order to make sound decisions on pesticide use, crops need to be
inspected regularly for disease, weed and pest infestation.
In line with the UK Regulations on Sustainable use, preference
should be given to products that represent a lower risk to the aquatic
environment and/or drinking water supplies and those that do not contain
priority hazardous substances. If you are unsure, seek advice from your
qualified BASIS adviser.
The label should always be read before using a pesticide. Pesticides
should only be used for the purpose for which they are approved. Even if a
pesticide is used regularly, the label should be consulted as revisions do
occur including changes to the legal requirements. If in doubt about pesticide
use, a BASIS qualified adviser should be consulted.
10.5 Storage of pesticides
Guidance on the storage of approved pesticides is given in HSE
Agricultural Information Sheet No 16 'Guidance on Storing Pesticides for
Farmers and Other Professional Users'.
· A chemical store should be properly
maintained and be large enough for its intended use and be constructed of fire-resistant
· The store should be designed to contain
any leaks or spillages to the capacity of 110% of the maximum store contents.
In areas where there are particular environmental concerns this may require to
be increased to 180%.
· Don't store more pesticide than is intended
· Stores should not be sited in areas
where there is a risk of pollution to watercourses or groundwater, and your
emergency contingency plan should include a map of your farm’s pesticide store
in relation to streams, wells and boreholes.
· Planning requirements may impose
restrictions on storing pesticides in certain catchments to protect drinking
water supplies. Before erecting a new pesticide store or substantially altering
existing storage arrangements, specialist advice should be sought.
10.6 Mixing pesticides and
Pesticides can easily pollute the environment. Even during the
careful opening of a pesticide container and pouring into a sprayer tank, small
drops can create potential 'point' sources of pollution. These small amounts
can cause pollution if they are allowed to run off into watercourses/
The careful selection of the location of pesticide handling and wash
down areas is important. At the farm, these operations should be carried out on
areas specifically designed and constructed for this purpose. In the field,
these operations must be carried out at least 10m from watercourses and at
least 50m from springs, wells and boreholes. Additionally, every precaution
should be taken to prevent spillage from entering field drains.
Where possible, full use should be made of equipment that reduces
the risk of pollution when filling sprayers (e.g. induction hoppers, closed
transfer systems, direct injection). Where possible, techniques such as
closed-handling and pre-mixing of pesticides should be used.
Water for filling the sprayer should be drawn from an intermediate
tank and never directly from the mains or a watercourse, as there is a danger
of back-siphoning occurring.
Guidance on the design of pesticide handling and wash-down areas is
available from the CPA (Crop Protection Association) under the Voluntary
initiative (VI) tool at http://www.voluntaryinitiative.org.uk/water/advice/
10.7 Application of
Pesticides should only be used where there is justification and
where conditions are suitable for application. Take the following actions prior
to applying pesticides:
· Carry out a COSHH assessment.
· Read the pesticide product label, paying
particular attention to the Statutory Information.
· Ensure the applicator is serviced and
· Check that the correct nozzles are
· Check the correct forward speed and boom
height for spraying.
· Ensure the correct water volume and
application dose of pesticide.
In addition to the information on the product label, help with
selection of nozzle type is available on a Home Grown Cereals Authority (HGCA)
chart, in CPA leaflets and British Crop Protection Council (BCPC) Handbooks.
When spraying near to a watercourse, low drift nozzles are advised to prevent
contamination, LERAPS must be followed and mandatory buffer zones near streams
must be adhered to.
There are some circumstances when the approved use of a pesticide
may present a particular risk to groundwater. Groundwater in Jersey is
vulnerable because of the shallow water table and light sandy soils: pesticides
may therefore move rapidly through the ground and enter groundwater. This may
be of particular concern where the groundwater is feeding a drinking water
supply. In general, persistent pesticides must not be applied within 50m of a
spring, well or borehole and you should consider the use of all pesticides
carefully, as pollution of these waterbodies may result in prosecution.
10.8 Storage of pesticide
During use, sprayers and tractors will become coated with pesticide
residues. This is particularly the case for the rear of tractors/sprayers where
negative pressure can produce a fine coating of residues.
It is therefore important to keep all spraying equipment, including
tractors and booms etc. out of the rain and under cover when not in use.
Take care on your speed when driving sprayers on the road. A small
spill near a watercourse can have a large detrimental impact.
Special consideration must be given when washing down spray
equipment, as the waste water and loose soil generated can be heavily
contaminated with pesticide residues. Some modern machinery is equipped to
complete this process in the field, however if you plan to wash down
application equipment on your farm you must ensure the process does not cause
10.9 Correct record keeping
Records of the justification, application rates, dates and location
of applications of pesticides, together with the type used, should be kept in
accordance with the UK ‘Green Code’ (whilst the Jersey Code is being developed).
There are certain areas of farmland which are particularly
sensitive. For example, arable field margins, the strips of land lying between
potato crops and field boundaries managed specifically for the benefit of
wildlife. Field boundaries are another sensitive habitat as pesticide drift
into hedges or ditches will reduce their value for wildlife. Wetter habitats
such as marshy grassland and permanent pasture are also very sensitive to
pesticide and herbicide drift. Information about sensitive species and habitats
in Jersey are available from the Natural Environment. See 2.2 Useful Contacts, Sect. 2.2.
protection management plan
In the UK the pesticides industry’s Voluntary Initiative (VI) is a
package of measures aimed at reducing the adverse environmental impact of
pesticides use and improving farmland biodiversity. To further this aim, the
Crop Protection Association (CPA) and supporting organisations have developed
the concept of Crop Protection Management Plans (CPMP), a measure that
encourages farmers and growers to produce a CPMP for their businesses. A CPMP
will set clear management objectives and identify specific issues that need to
be addressed as well as the actions needed including alternatives to using
pesticides. Guidance on preparing CPMPs is available from the Department of the
Environment, the CPA, agricultural advisers and online.
Two further voluntary initiative measures are the National Sprayer Testing
Scheme (NSTS) and the National Register of Sprayer Operators (NRoSO). Farmers
and Growers are advised to ensure that any contracted sprayers used are
registered with the NRoSO and that equipment is tested in accordance with the
NSTS. Local advisers should be consulted for advice on these measures.
environmental risk assessment for pesticides (LERAP)
The use of LERAPs is now permitted in Jersey. Certain plant
protection products have an aquatic buffer zone requirement when applied by
horizontal boom or broadcast air assisted sprayers. If you want to reduce this
a LERAP needs to be carried out. However, if you just want to apply the buffer
zone on the label you don’t have to carry out a LERAP but you should still
record this in your spray records. If a product has the use of drift reduction
technology (DRT) as a condition of horizontal boom spraying, then this should
also be recorded. A record of where a buffer zone has been applied should be
recorded in your pesticide application records.
In order to minimise the impact of pesticide drift onto non-target
crops, vegetation, wildlife habitats or watercourses, it is important to take
account of droplet quality and weather conditions.
Conditions are unsuitable for spraying where the wind speed is
greater than Force 3 on the Beaufort Scale (4.0 to 6.0 mph or 6.5 to 9.6 km/h).
Even at Force 3 there is an increased risk of spray drift and special care
needs to be taken. Detailed guidance on these points is set out in the UK ‘Green
of pesticides and containers
pesticide and pesticide washings
It is not only a false economy to continue storing unused pesticides
as an alternative to disposal, it is illegal if the approval for storage and
use has been withdrawn. On no account may waste concentrates be diluted for
disposal. Good stock control in store prevents waste. In some instances, it may
be possible to return unwanted, unused pesticides to the supplier.
Alternatively, holders of such materials will need to use the licensed waste
10.14.2 Waste pesticide and pesticide
Whenever possible sprayers should be washed and rinsed out in the
field where the pesticide has been used, using the minimum amount of water
necessary and ensuring that the maximum dose is not exceeded.
If the sprayer is washed out elsewhere and the resulting washings
cannot be used on the treated crop, these washings should be collected for
disposal by the licensed waste disposal operator.
The washing facilities provided must be designed to ensure that back
siphoning of pesticides into the water supply cannot occur. Non-return valves
should be fitted to any taps connected to spray equipment. Such activities will
produce a relatively large volume of water contaminated at low concentration
with pesticide. If suitable, the contaminated water may be used later for
making a further batch of the same dilute pesticide. On completion of
wash-down, protective clothing involved in the operation should be cleaned,
washed and rinsed within the area used for cleaning the sprayer. Single use coveralls
should be stored in a separate locker prior to disposal.
Other acceptable options for dealing with waste pesticides and
pesticide washings are:
· Application to previously untreated crop
areas, within the permitted use of the pesticide (as per product label) and
absence of water bodies.
· Treat waste using bio-filters/beds.
Please contact Natural Environment to obtain advice.
· Do not discharge water used for
hydroponics unless you have a discharge permit (issued by Consumer and Environmental
Protection, Regulation, GHE).
· Storage of the waste in a suitable
container pending delivery or collection by a licenced waste disposal operator.
of pesticide containers
Unless the product label clearly states otherwise, cleaned
containers and surplus concentrate must be disposed of through the licensed
waste disposal operator. Empty pesticide containers and measuring vessels must
be thoroughly rinsed out and the rinse water should be returned to the sprayer.
The cleaned containers should never be reused or left lying about,
as they can be a source of pollution and a potential safety hazard due to the
presence of residues. The burning or burial of empty, even rinsed, pesticide
containers is not allowed.
Farmers and growers should check whether manufacturers and suppliers
of pesticides offer a recovery service for used containers. Empty pesticide
containers should never be re-used for any purpose except where the
manufacturer offers a refilling service. Containers of liquids, except those
liable to produce hazardous gases, should always be thoroughly rinsed into the
spray tank before disposal or return. Label instructions for cleaning should be
followed or, in the absence of any instructions, the container should be
thoroughly rinsed and the rinsing liquid added to form part of the spray
dilution. Different conditions apply to the containers of solid or granular
pesticides. Ensure you follow the label recommendations and dispose of these
Once the container has been cleaned, all foils and seals should be
placed within the container and the cap re-attached. If practicable, the labels
should not be disfigured. Containers should be stored in a secure compound
pending their disposal. Such waste will generally be accepted by the licensed
waste disposal operator.
11 Fuel and Oil
Fuels and oils are used in a wide range of machinery and for
heating. Accidental spillages of oil into watercourses and onto land can have
serious impacts for plant and animal life in Jersey and cause long lasting
pollution of water.
If a loss of oil to land occurs, specialist advice and
assistance may be necessary. The Department of the Environment should be
notified immediately of any oil loss that might cause pollution tel: 709535.
The Building Bye-Laws set standards for building work. Their aim is
to ensure the health and safety of people in and around buildings by setting
requirements for building design and construction.
Liquid fuel storage systems (and the pipes connecting them to combustion
appliances) with a capacity of 3500 litres or less must comply with the
Building Bye-laws (Jersey) 2007 (as amended). There are technical guidance
documents available on the gov.je website or from the Department of the
Environment, Planning and Building Services that give more detailed guidance on
the standards required to meet the Bye-Laws. See 2.2 Useful Contacts Sect. 2.2.
Fuel oil installations with a capacity of more than 3500 litres must
comply with BS 799-5:1987 Oil Burning Equipment.
The Building Bye-Laws are not retrospective so tanks which were
installed prior to 2007 may not meet current standards. However, it is an
offense under the Water Pollution (Jersey) Law 2000 to pollute any controlled
waters (e.g. surface water, groundwater, coastal waters) with oil. In any event
you should consider replacing tanks that are older than 20 years old or that
are no longer fit for purpose.
11.1 Design and construction
of fuel stores and tanks
All liquid fuel storage systems should meet the requirements of
BS5410. It is recommended that fuel tanks are located above ground as this
makes them easier to check and maintain. In cases where they have to be sited
underground the tank must be contained in a specially constructed waterproof
chamber with access that allows a complete walk around inspection, plus a bund
sensor with an alarm. Pipework and off-set fill pipes are common causes of
leaks and should be installed to be compliant with Building Bye-Laws.
Storage tanks should be labelled to describe tank capacity and fuel
type. All oil storage installations should also carry a label in a prominent
position giving the water pollution hotline number and advice on what to do if
a spill occurs. See 2.2 Useful Contacts, Sect. 2.2.
11.2 Secondary containment of
fuel storage tanks (bunds)
Bunds, whether part of a prefabricated tank system or constructed on
site must have a capacity of at least 110% of the largest fuel tank they have
been designed to contain. Bunds constructed of masonry or concrete must be in
accordance with the guidance contained in the technical guidance documents
available on the gov.je website or from Planning and Building Services
Regulation that give more detailed guidance on the standards required to meet
the Bye-Laws. Oil tanks with integral bunds must also comply with the relevant
standards. See 2.2 Useful Contacts, Sect. 2.2.
Every part of the container must be within the bund including all
taps, valves, pipes and these must discharge downwards into the bund.
Permanently attached flexible pipes must be fitted with automatic cut off taps
and valves which must be locked shut when not in use to mitigate against
tampering by third parties. No outlet should be provided in the bund as this
could allow escape of fuel oil and cause a major pollution incident.
Where applicable a system for the removal of rainwater and spillages
must be provided for example a small sump for removal by a hand pump. Providing
a roof will reduce the volume of waste material collected in the sump where
11.3 Location of fuel storage
Considerations for siting include the location of other buildings as
well as the location of the nearest drains, watercourses and water supplies. No
part of the fuel oil storage facility should be within 50m of a borehole, well,
or spring or within 10m of any inland water. Avoid locations where a spillage
could contaminate other storage materials such as animal feeds.
Fire and the possibility of spillage should be considered. Further
advice on fire protection can be found in the Technical Guidance Documents
available on the gov.je website or from the Department of the Environment,
Planning and Building Services. See 2.2 Useful Contacts, Sect. 2.2.
11.4 Access to fuel stores
This should satisfy the needs of delivery and business vehicles.
Good artificial lighting should be considered for the area to provide safe
working conditions and for security reasons in some situations.
Areas around the store on which vehicles park to load and unload
should ideally be concreted. If possible, the drainage gradients should be
inwards to the storage area. Drains leading to controlled waters should be
fitted with a suitable oil trap and/or some means of sealing the drain in an
11.5 Operational management
of fuel stores
Where feasible, the delivery of fuel should be supervised and only
when unavoidable should ladders or steps be used. In such cases it is essential
that Health and Safety regulations are
When used, tanks with top openings should be provided with a
suitable system to hold the filler pipe in position. Where the filler pipe
connection is below the maximum fuel level in the tank, a tap or non-return
valve must be fitted to prevent spillage when the filler pipe is disconnected.
A method to indicate the level of the fuel oil in the tank should be
provided. Gravity is frequently the method adopted for transferring the
contents from the storage tank and this necessitates the tank being raised
above the level of the vehicle’s fuel tank. Good working access and a trigger
valve should be provided to prevent the operator overfilling the vehicle’s
11.6 Maintenance of fuel
· The storage area and bund should be
regularly checked for the presence of water and fuel oil to ascertain that
there have been no failures of the structure. The bund should be frequently
emptied of accumulated rainwater.
· The storage tank(s) and associated pipes
and valves should be regularly checked for leakage.
· The tank, if made of steel, will require
regular maintenance of the exterior surface.
11.7 Temporary storage of
fuel in mobile tanks
The same care and attention should be given to the installation and
use of mobile fuel tanks as those for permanent storage. Installation should be
to the same basic specification and be fitted with equivalent safety devices as
necessary to minimise spillage of oil.
The fuel systems of engines used to drive pumps (e.g. irrigation
pumps) should be regularly checked to ensure they are in good working order.
Any leakage of fuel would pose a significant risk of pollution.
Avoid temporary storage of fuels and oils in places from which a
leak or spill could enter a watercourse or groundwater. Great care must be
taken in transferring fuel oil from cans or drums to the fuel tank of an
A Contingency Plan should be prepared to cope with any possible
potential spillage and proprietary spill kits should be available to deal with
any clean up. Any contaminated spill kits (after use in a spillage) should be
disposed of to a suitable licensed site.
A supply of sawdust, or proprietary oil absorbent, should be
provided close to the fuel oil store. This can be used to soak up relatively minor
spillage and/or contain a more serious spillage.
All relevant personnel should be aware of the pollution risks
associated with fuel oil and the details of the contingency plan and actions
necessary to deal with any emergency.
Never use detergents to clean up an oil spill. This will
cause an increased and unacceptable risk of environmental harm. In the event
of an emergency telephone the Water pollution hotline number tel: 709535.
management and minimisation
Waste Management (Jersey) Law 2005
The Waste Management (Jersey) Law 2005 regulates waste disposal
activities including wastes generation. Sites for the disposing, treating or
recovering of waste need a licence from the Department of the Environment
unless they are exempt under the Waste Management (Exemptions from Licencing)
(Jersey) Order 2006.
If you handle, treat, recover or dispose of wastes on land it is
your responsibility to ensure that your arrangements for waste are compliant.
The Department of the Environment can offer help and guidance. See 2.2 Useful Contacts, Sect. 2.2.
Do not dispose of (or store indefinitely) scrap metal, plastic or
other rubbish on land or land tips and do not burn wastes (other than natural
plant matter, wood and vegetation) as a means of disposal. Wastes are
substances or materials which the holder discards, intends to discard, or is
required to discard.
Some wastes have hazardous properties (e.g. waste oil, lead acid
batteries and asbestos cement sheeting) - these are called hazardous wastes.
Hazardous wastes are subject to additional controls to reflect the higher risk
associated with them. The waste producer must correctly identify the hazardous
nature of the waste to any person storing, carrying or otherwise dealing with
Anyone who imports, produces, carries, keeps, treats or disposes of controlled
waste (hazardous waste, health care waste or municipal waste) or, as a broker,
has control of such waste, has a duty of care to ensure that:
· They do not cause pollution of the
environment or harm to human health.
· They prevent the escape of waste from
their control or that of any other.
· Wastes are only passed onto persons who
are authorised to accept them.
· A written description of the waste (e.g.
on a transfer note) is provided at the handover of the waste to any third party
to enable them to comply with their duty of care and take any such precautions
in handling the waste and ensure it is taken to a licenced or exempt site which
is authorised to deal with that category of waste.
Prior to importing, carrying, keeping, treating or disposing of
waste, it is important to ensure that a person is authorised to do so. Persons
who accept wastes for storage, treatment or disposal will either require an appropriate
licence or the activity may in certain circumstances be exempt from licensing. Transporters
of hazardous and/or health care wastes, (which includes waste from veterinary
treatment), must not carry them in a motor vehicle on a public road unless they
are registered to do so with the Department of the Environment.
Fly-tipping is a criminal
offence under the Waste Management (Jersey) Law 2005 and any such activity
should be reported to the Department of the Environment, Parish and/or the
States Police. These bodies will investigate incidences where fly tipping has
occurred and can instigate proceedings against perpetrators where they can be
identified. A convicted fly tipper can receive an unlimited fine and/or up to
two years imprisonment.
12.4 Bonfires on land
The open burning of any wastes (other than exempt activities
described below), should not take place. The open burning of waste as a means
of disposal is not accepted practice and can cause pollution. Burning plastics,
packaging, tyres or waste oil in the open can produce large amounts of
polluting smoke and is illegal. Residues from plastics and tyres in particular
will contaminate the ground and can cause pollution of groundwater and
watercourses. Burning them at low temperatures, typical of a bonfire or open
drum, will allow toxic compounds to escape into the atmosphere.
There is an exemption from this prohibition for the burning on open
land of controlled waste consisting of wood, bark or other plant matter, if:
· The waste is produced in or on a woodland,
park, garden, verge, landscaped area, sports ground, recreation ground,
churchyard or cemetery, or it is produced on other land as a result of
· The burning is carried out on the land
where the waste was produced.
· The total quantity of all such wastes
that are burned in any period of 24 hours does not exceed 10 tonnes.
However, open burning should only be undertaken with great
consideration for your neighbours and the environment. Smoke emissions from
burning wastes can cause an offence under the Statutory Nuisances (Jersey) Law
12.5 Land spreading of
The use of controlled waste that is beneficial to the environment is
exempt from licensing and this is outlined below. This can be applicable to
both livestock slurries and manures generated on the farm as well as
non-agricultural waste and other ‘imported’ organic wastes which can provide
nutrients and other benefits to agricultural land.
You should maintain a record of evidence that the land spreading of such
wastes is beneficial to your agricultural land and include them in your Farm
Manure and Crop Nutrition Plans (including waste nutrient analysis, crop
nutrient requirement, volumes and date applied and advice received from your
FACTS qualified advisor).
The use of controlled waste is considered to be beneficial to the
· It is put to use without further
· The use does not amount to disposal.
· The quantity that is being stored for
beneficial use does not exceed 100 tonnes.
Producing and following an ‘Organic Fertilizer Management Plan’ will
help maximise the value of manures and slurries produced on farms and will
reduce the loss of nutrients from land and the runoff of dirty water from yards
used by livestock.
Under the Water Pollution (Water Management) (Jersey) Order 2020
amenity land means any land (not covered by a building) used as a park, garden,
playground, golf course, sports field or for any other recreational purpose.
Under the Water Pollution (Jersey) Law 2000 and for the purposes of
the Water Pollution (Water Management) (Jersey) Order 2020 the definition of fertiliser
means a chemical or natural substance that is added to soil to improve its
productivity. This includes bagged fertiliser, lime, slurry, Farmyard Manure
and other manures, compost, sewage sludge and other similar ‘natural’ and
man-made materials applied to land for beneficial use.
A heavily grazed field is a field or parcel of
land that is grazed or occupied by livestock intensively. As a guideline it is
considered heavily grazed if there is more than 340 kg/N/Ha (which is 60
kg/N/verge) of urine and dung
deposited by livestock on the field in any 12-month period.
These loafing paddocks and heavily grazed
fields should not receive any additional organic matter from the spreading of
slurry, farm yard manure, compost, sewage sludge or other material which will
further enrich their fertility leading to leaching and runoff of nutrients.
Example; Dairy Herd of 200 Jersey milking cows restricted to a
grazing block around the farm amounting to 80 vergées over a grazing/outdoor
loafing period 1st March – 30th September each year.
1. One cow deposits 45kg of 10% DM muck and urine containing 0.36% N in
any 24-hour period.
2. Dairy herd grazing or loafing on the 80 vergée grazing block for 20
hours (83% of 24-hour period) for 214 days period.
3. Heavily grazed Nitrogen disposition limit
340kg/ha per annum (60Kg/N per vergée per annum).
· 200 cows x 214 days x 45kg x 83% =
1,598,580kg (1,598.6 tonnes) 10% DM muck per annum.
· 1,598,580kg x 0.36 %N /80 vergées = 71.9
Kg N deposited per vergée per annum.
71.9 Kg N per vergée per annum is above the threshold for N inputs
from dung and urine from grazing animals of 60Kg N per vergée per annum.
Therefore no further slurry or FYM should be spread on the farm’s 80 vergée
Drainage means the process of removing water from the soil that is
in excess of the needs of crop plants.
The causes of poor drainage of agricultural land in Jersey is either
related to low lying fields or to soils that have been cultivated or ploughed
at the same depth on an annual basis leading to the formation of a hard soil
pan just below cultivation depth and/or harvesting and cultivating in wet soil
conditions leading to restricted water movement through the soil strata
resulting in soil erosion problems.
poaching of agricultural land
Poaching is the damage caused to turf or sward
by the feet of livestock. Hooves cause compaction of the soil surface, leaving
depressions which can be 10cm to 12cm deep. This can form an almost continuous
layer of grey anaerobic soil, where natural activity, carried out by soil
micro-organisms, is low. Widespread poaching lowers sward productivity, with
knock-on consequences for meat or milk yield. It can also lead to welfare
issues such as lameness, while mastitis and somatic cell counts can rise. Poaching
will also lead to an increased risk of run-off as water is unable to permeate
soil, and can give farming a poor image.
Regularly used tracks and highly-stocked fields
in wet conditions or cattle having access to wet areas, particularly around inappropriately-placed or overflowing water
troughs, will cause poaching. Feeding rings left in the same position also
Frequent movement of livestock along the same
routes, such as cows to milking parlour, also puts pressure on fields closest
to farm buildings.
Poorly-drained soils, badly-maintained ditches
and blocked drains create a sward prone to poaching. Grazing new leys too early
in the season or when excessively wet should be avoided.
Surface compaction, caused by cattle or
machines/ vehicles, can lead to poaching of the top surface while the substrata
remain dry. Water becomes trapped as it cannot drain
away quickly because it cannot permeate soil.
Field (or parcel of land) occupied by livestock
on a regular basis to enable them to exercise but which provides minimal grazing or forage intake for those livestock
from the grass or other crop growing in that field.
Note: The above fields can become enriched by
the continuous deposit of manure and urine from regular use by livestock
leading to leaching and runoff problems.
A rotation is the practice of growing a number of different crops in
the same field over successive seasons. This is good agricultural practice as
it can be used to provide a barrier to crop pest and diseases and allows land
managers to ensure soil characteristics such as organic matter are sustainably
managed. The sowing of a cover crop outside of the main growing season is
considered a catch crop and is not a rotation.
Heavily compacted soils contain few large pores and have a reduced
rate of both water infiltration and drainage from the compacted layer. This
occurs because large pores are the most effective in moving water through the
soil when it is saturated. In addition, the exchange of gases slows down in
compacted soils, causing an increase in the likelihood of aeration-related
problems (such as poor root growth). Finally, while soil compaction increases
soil strengthening (the ability of soil to resist being moved by an applied
force-a compacted soil also means that roots must exert greater force to
penetrate the compacted layer).
With farm tractors and field equipment becoming
larger and heavier, there is growing concern around soil compaction. Soil
compaction can be associated with the majority of field operations that are
often performed when soils are wet and more susceptible to compaction. Soil
structure is important because it determines the ability of a soil to hold and
conduct water, nutrients, and air that are necessary for plant root activity.
Although much research has been conducted on soil compaction and its effects on
yield, it is difficult to estimate an economic impact because fields vary in
soil types, crop rotations, and weather conditions.
Soil erosion is the significant displacement of the upper layer of
soil on land. The agents of soil erosion are water and wind, each contributing
a significant amount of soil loss each year. Soil erosion may be a slow process
that continues relatively unnoticed, or it may occur at an alarming rate
causing a serious loss of topsoil. The loss of soil from farmland may be
reflected in reduced crop production potential, lower surface water quality and
damaged drainage networks.
Excessive (or accelerated) erosion causes both ‘on-site’ and ‘off-site’
problems. On-site impacts include decreases in agricultural
productivity and a loss of soil fertility due to the loss of the nutrient-rich
upper soil layers. Off-site effects include sedimentation
of watercourses and eutrophication of water bodies, as well as
sediment-related damage to roads and houses. Soil carried off in rain or
irrigation water can lead to sedimentation of streams, ponds and coastal areas.
The problem is exacerbated if there is no vegetation left along the banks of
ponds and watercourses to hold the soil.
14 Other Useful Links and
of Good Agricultural Practice for Reducing Ammonia Emissions
This information explains the practical
steps farmers, growers, land managers, advisors and contractors in England can take to minimise ammonia emissions
from farms. Recommended measures include ways of storing and applying organic
manures, ways of applying fertilisers, and modifications to livestock diet and
of Practice for Using Plant Protection Products (The UK ‘Green Code’)
Produced by DEFRA and the Health & Safety Commission
(HSC), this is the latest version of the UK code of
practice for the safe use of plant protection products. Whilst Jersey has a
separate Pesticides Code of Practice, the guidance in this document is more
recent and following it will be considered good practice.
and Safety Executive Pesticide Approvals
An online search tool that allows you to search
for current product approvals by MAPP number or product name. This search tool
should be used when conducting your regular pesticide store inventories to ensure you are aware of upcoming
revocations. Other information such as details on EAMUs are also available
through this page.
Jersey Farm Risk Map
An online search tool that allows you to look
up the current risk rating for local fields. This tool is designed to supplement your current risk ratings and should be used
as a baseline tool, field conditions and your knowledge of ground conditions
should be used to determine the true actual risk before any field operations
our water, soil and air
A Code of Good Agricultural Practice for
farmers, growers and land managers which offers practical interpretation and
provides good advice on best practice. Good agricultural practice means a
practice that minimises the risk of causing pollution while protecting natural
resources and allowing economic agriculture to continue. It has been written by
technical specialists from Defra and Natural England.
Nutrient Management Guide (RB209)
Published by the AHDB, the Nutrient Management Guide (RB209) helps
you make the most of organic materials and balance the benefits of fertiliser
use against the costs – both economic and environmental. The guide
explains the value of nutrients, soil and why good nutrient management is about
more than just the fertilisers you buy; it can save you money as well as help
protect the environment.