Skip Navigation

Treated Wood Waste (Code 500)


The Natural Resources Conservation Service is offering conservation assistance by encouraging California growers to use new and innovative agricultural emission reduction practices and technologies that provide significant environmental benefits to our natural resources.

Chemically-treated wood wastes contains hazardous chemicals that can cause a risk to human health and the environment if not handled appropriately.  These chemicals known to be toxic or carcinogenic may include creosote, arsenic, chromium, copper, pentachlorophenol, or other chemical preservative that protects wood from insects and fungal decay.  The California Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) has management standards in place for the handling and disposal of treated wood wastes.  

This practice provides a payment for the proper and safe handling and disposal of chemically-treated wood wastes removed from vineyards, orchards, and bush crops.  The treatment avoids exposure to hazardous smoke and ash caused from illegal burning or dust emissions from chipping, sawing or shredding activities.  Disposal occurs at a Qualified Disposal Facility approved by the State of California.  

Each eligible application undergoes a screening and ranking process to consider the air quality resource benefits of any planned conservation practice, as identified by local, state, and national priorities.  Offered statewide, proposals within any PM nonattainment area of California will receive a higher priority.

Practice Standard:  500 – Obstruction Removal

California producers must meet EQIP eligibility requirements to qualify for payments.

  • Chemically-treated wood removed for agricultural purposes is eligible.  
  • Do not burn, chip, grind or mulch treated wood or treated wood wastes.
  • The producer is responsible for understanding the DTSC requirements for the proper handling, storage, shipping and disposal of treated wood wastes, and for complying with their permitting requirements and approvals.  More information is available on the DTSC website: 
  • DTSC places notification and identification requirements for anyone generating more than 10,000 pounds of treated wood wastes within a calendar year.  If applicable, the producer must contact the DTSC to determine whether any notification, Identification Number, and other requirements apply.
  • Avoid storing chemically-treated wood on the ground.  Instead, store the treated wood on blocks, concrete surfaces, in containers, or a storage building.  If necessary, cover the stored treated wood during inclement weather to prevent rainwater from leaching chemicals out. 
  • Store accumulated treated wood wastes away from public access. 
  • Disposal is at a Qualified Disposal Facility, which is either a hazardous waste landfill or a composite-lined portion of a solid waste landfill approved to accept treated wood wastes by the California Regional Water Quality Control Board.  Because not all facilities accept treated wood wastes, the producer must receive prior confirmation from the Qualified Disposal Facility that they will accept the treated wood waste shipment. 
  • A fact sheet and list of Qualified Disposal Facilities are available at the DTSC website:
  • As deliverables, the producer will submit to NRCS copies of the weight tags issued by the Qualified Disposal Facility.

For More Information

For more information about the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), please contact your local USDA Service Center.  A directory is available at:


Updated: 5/29/2019