NC State University Pest Management Policy Statement
Structural and landscape pests can pose significant problems to people, property, and the environment; however, the pesticides used to solve these problems carry their own risks. It is therefore the policy of NC State University to use best practices and procedures, as explained below, for control of structural and landscape pests.
Pests are living organisms (“animals”, plants, or microorganisms) that adversely affect the quality of life of university faculty, staff, students and visitors. Strategies for managing pest populations will be influenced by the pest species, and the degree to which it poses a threat to people, property, or the environment.
Pests will be managed to:
- reduce any potential human health hazard or to protect against a significant threat to public safety
- prevent loss or damage to university resources, structures or property
- prevent pests from spreading in the community, or to plant and animal populations beyond the campus sites
- enhance the quality of life for students, staff and others
- comply with health and safety regulatory requirements
Best Practices and Procedures
Best management procedures, identified below, will determine when to control pests, and whether to use physical, horticultural, or biological means. Chemical controls should be used as a last resort. Management procedures are based upon current, comprehensive information on the pest and the environment, and the best available pest control methods. These procedures are intended to prevent unacceptable levels of pest activity and damage.
1. Applicators are to minimize pesticide application by following the most advanced practices (i.e., “best practices”) that maximize effectiveness and safety, and minimize environmental impact. Licensed applicators are to stay informed through recertification training classes on Integrated Pest Management techniques and to consult with University faculty members, and others when appropriate.
2. Prior to the application of any pesticide, the building space or exterior area is to be inspected and the following factors are to be considered when deciding to manage pests: assessment of the pest population size, potential for economic or aesthetic damage, pest control options, including the type of pesticide that might be used. Routine and preventive uses of pesticides are to be minimized and limited to known problem areas. As a general rule, application of any pesticide in any area, interior or exterior, shall not occur unless inspection or monitoring indicate the presence of pests in that specific area. The presence and degree of pest(s) infestation must be documented in the Pesticide Record Log (see Record Keeping section below) so that effectiveness of the treatment can be measured.
3. When it is determined that a pesticide must be used in order to manage pests, the least-hazardous material will be chosen. Pesticides should be used only if adequate control cannot be achieved with non-chemical methods, such as cleaning infested areas or dehumidification. If pesticides are used, the order of selection shall be pesticides that are the least hazardous or those with a ‘Caution’ label followed by pesticides with a ‘Warning’ label and lastly those with a ‘Danger’ label. . The application of such pesticides is subject to the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (7 USC 136 et seq.), North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (NCDA &CS), Environmental Protection Agency regulations in 40 CFR, Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations, University regulations, and state and local regulations.
4. All pesticides used must be from an approved list of chemicals. The Environmental Health and Safety Center (EHSC) will maintain a list of current and approved pesticides that will be developed with input of licensed applicators and NC State University faculty familiar with pest control. Approval through the EHSC is necessary for introduction of a new pesticide.
5. Where pesticide use is necessary, "reduced risk measures" will be used, i.e., the applicator shall employ materials, quantities and application methods that minimize the risk or hazard of exposure to the applicator, building occupants, and the environment in general.
6. Pesticide applied to the air or to exposed surfaces should be used selectively for treatment inside buildings. If the use is essential for a special circumstance, tenants must not be present during treatment and if necessary, after a prescribed period thereafter. As a general rule, pesticides should be applied only as containerized or crack and crevice treatments in which the applied material is minimally hazardous to humans.
7. As a general rule, insecticides should be applied only as baits formulated as solids, pastes, or gels. Spray or dust formulations of certain approved insecticides (such as boric acid) are permissible for crack and crevice treatments only when solids, pastes or gels are not appropriate.
8. Bait formulations, traps, vacuuming for sanitation, and exclusion techniques should be emphasized for rodent control.
9. Exclusion techniques should be emphasized for bird and bat control in main campus buildings.
10. Spray application of a pesticide shall be performed out-of-doors in a manner that minimizes potential for drift and reduces hazards of exposure to passers-by. Preferentially, spray application should be limited to early morning or when classes are not in session.
11. Out-of-doors or indoor pesticide application in the vicinity of air vents, open windows or doors, or operating window air conditioners (AC) must be preceded by blocking vent(s) or airflow to interior spaces and by covering or turning off window AC units. Affected tenants are to be notified in advance if ventilation is to be reduced.
12. Pest control application is limited to designated employees (see ‘Pesticide Applicators’ below) in Athletics, Facilities Operations and Housing. All other university employees, students and visitors, or contractors not authorized by Athletics, Facilities Operations or Housing, must contact EHSC at 515-6862 for permission to apply pesticides for non-research applications.
13. During their walk-around inspections, pest management applicators will note conditions, i.e. food or food waste left uncontainerized, that promote pests. These conditions will be documented in the Pesticide Record Log (explained in Record Keeping section below) and reported to the appropriate personnel for corrective action.
14. Pesticides with “Turf and Ornamental” labels must be used in landscaping applications and not those with “Agriculture Use Only” labels.
Residence Hall staff and students, university staff and custodial staff will be educated about pest management policies and procedures. At the beginning of each semester, resident hall advisors will advise students to follow good sanitation practices by keeping areas free of food sources by containerizing food and waste, and removing food debris after eating. University staff will be advised by EHSC throughout the year in notifications and articles placed in the Bulletin. The Facilities Operations’ staff will emphasize the importance of good sanitation practices and pest control to the custodial staff.
Records of pesticide use shall be maintained on site in the Pesticide Record Log to meet the requirements of the state and federal regulatory agencies and university policy. The Athletic Department, Facilities Operations and University Housing will keep written records of any pesticide used, including pesticides applied by a contractor. Also documented will be any non-chemical methods being used. Conditions that promote pest infestation will also be recorded, e.g. uncontainerized food wastes and unscreened opened doors or windows. Records will kept for a period of two years. The objective is to create records from which programs and practices can be evaluated in order to improve the system and to eliminate ineffective and unnecessary treatments.
All label notification requirements shall be followed. Personnel who are sensitive to chemicals should identify themselves to EHSC, Industrial Hygiene at 919-515-6862. Based upon on a consultation with the individual, his/her physician and EHSC, a decision will be made on what notification is warranted.
Pesticide Storage and Disposal
Pesticides will be stored and disposed of according to the University’s Hazardous Waste Program regulations in accordance with EPA, university policies and other associated regulations. Pesticides must be stored in an appropriate, secure site not accessible to the general public. For information on storage or disposal the EHSC can be contacted at 515-6863.
Pesticide applicators using pesticides for non-research applications (including both structural applicators and turf and ornamental applicators) must have an appropriate NCDA & CS applicator’s credentials or must work under the supervision of an applicator holding the appropriate credentials. All applicators must follow regulations, label precautions and record keeping requirements. Athletics, Housing and Facilities Operations must keep a list of designated employees on file with the appropriate department head. Contractors must be approved by Facilities Operations, Athletics or Housing before engaging in any pesticide application on campus. Contractors must follow these guidelines when applying pesticides on campus.
- Licensed veterinarians and licensed veterinary technicians working under the direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian in a hospital setting are exempt from the certified applicator requirement.
- Small laboratory quantities of pesticides used for analysis and treatment of samples in a laboratory and in an environmentally non-dispersive manner are exempt from this policy. Like all other chemical use in the laboratory, use of lab quantities is regulated by OSHA’s Laboratory Standard and other appropriate rules and regulations.
- Pesticides used in agricultural research including greenhouses are exempt from this policy.