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Facilities and Premises Procedure - Pesticide Management and Notification

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Section 1 - Purpose

(1) The aim of this procedure is to meet the community’s general right to know about pesticide applications made to outdoor public places owned or controlled by the University. The Procedure allows members of Charles Sturt University (the University) and its general communities to take action to avoid potential contact with pesticides, if they wish.

(2) This procedure has been prepared in accordance with the Pesticides Regulation 2017 where it is referred to as the Pesticide Use Notification Plan.

(3) The University will ensure that pesticides are applied in a safe, responsible manner, minimising harm to persons or the environment.

(4) This procedure sets out how the University will notify staff, students, visitors and members of the public of pesticide applications made by the University or its approved contractors, to places under its control.

(5) The procedure describes:

  1. what places are covered by the procedure,
  2. who regularly uses these places and an estimate of the level of use,
  3. how and when the University will provide information about its pesticide applications,
  4. how persons can access this procedure and obtain more information about the University’s notification arrangements,
  5. how future reviews of the procedure will be conducted, and
  6. contact details for anyone wishing to discuss this procedure with the University.

(6) This procedure states that the University only uses pesticides in public places when necessary to eliminate noxious weeds, to protect property from pest damage, and to protect users of public places from nuisance or danger.

(7) The majority of pesticide use consists of applying herbicides for weed control and applying insecticides to manage certain insect pests. Bait insecticides are used for termites, and any control to protect structures and public safety, wherever this is considered as an effective solution. Other pesticides that may be used include fungicides, rodenticides, bird baits and large vertebrate baits.

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Section 2 - Policy

(8) This procedure supports the Facilities and Premises Policy.

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Section 3 - Procedure

Locations covered by this procedure

(9) This procedure provides information on the University’s use of pesticides in the following categories of outdoor public places:

  1. parks and gardens,
  2. bushland,
  3. sporting fields, courts and ovals,
  4. road verges and reserves,
  5. pathways,
  6. easements accessible to the public,
  7. drains,
  8. paved areas,
  9. commons, and
  10. lawns.

(10) All farm areas, including those used for teaching and research, are excluded from this procedure.

(11) This procedure provides information on the University’s use of pesticides in the following categories of University buildings:

  1. offices,
  2. residential accommodation,
  3. teaching and conference facilities,
  4. libraries,
  5. preschools and childcare facilities,
  6. gymnasiums, and
  7. laboratories, and other general University buildings.

Typical pesticide applications used on University premises

(12) As part of this procedure, the Facilities Management (FM) has provided a summary of the type of pesticide typically used in different locations at each campus. Refer to the Campus Pesticide Application Plans.

Notification arrangements

(13) This section of the procedure describes how and when the University will provide notice of pesticide use on University premises and in public places. These notification arrangements are based on the University’s assessment of:

  1. the level of usage of places or areas where pesticides may be applied,
  2. the extent to which members of the University or the public who are most likely to be sensitive to pesticides (for example, young children, sick, pregnant and elderly people) are likely to use these areas regularly,
  3. the extent to which activities generally undertaken in these areas could lead to some direct contact with pesticides (for example areas where food is consumed, sporting or other recreational activities that result in contact with the ground), and
  4. the type of pesticide used.

(14) Notice of pesticide applications will be provided by a combination of the methods below:

  1. signs,
  2. information to hirers,
  3. posting to the University What's New portal, and
  4. direct contact to members or groups, including preschools, childcare facilities, residential accommodation and University tenants.

(15) The University may use small quantities of some pesticide applications that are widely available in retail outlets and ordinarily used for domestic purposes (including home gardening). The University does not intend to provide notice for such pesticide applications, other than by way of this description in this procedure. This will also apply to minor control of indoor and outdoor insect pests using baits or aerosol spray cans, and spot weed control using a wand or hand-held spray bottle.

(16) The University recognises the rights of adjoining landowners may be sensitive to pesticide residues. Pesticide application will be undertaken to prevent spray drift off University premises and prevent contamination of waterways, water reservoirs, tanks and sewers.

(17) All pesticide application shall be conducted in an ecologically sensitive and sustainable manner to mitigate by-kill and maintain biodiversity on University campuses.

(18) Pesticide application shall follow the SafeWork NSW, Safe Use of Pesticides Including Herbicides in Non-Agricultural Workplaces, Code of Practice (WorkCover NSW), and use the pesticide records templates provided in that Code of Practice.

Emergency pesticide applications

(19) An emergency pesticide application may be necessary on University premises to deal with biting or dangerous pests such as rodents, wasps, bees, venomous spiders, fleas, bird mites or similar creatures. In these situations, the University will, where possible, provide notice by posting signs nearby at the time of the application. If this is not possible, the University will provide information via its website and signage that includes contact details.

Pesticide contractors and lessees of public places

(20) Where the University uses contractors to apply pesticides on its behalf, the University will ensure that notification is made in accordance with the notification requirements of this procedure. Where persons or organisation hold an existing licence on University land that remains a public place, and if they use pesticides in this area, the University will still require notification in accordance with the requirements of this procedure.

What information will be provided

(21) In accordance with Part 5, Division 2, of the Pesticides Regulation 2017, notices of pesticide use must include all the following information:

  1. the full product name of the pesticide to be used,
  2. the purpose of the use, clearly setting out what pest or pests are being treated,
  3. the proposed date/s or date range of the pesticide use,
  4. the place where the pesticide is to be used,
  5. contact telephone number and email address of the responsible officer, whom people can contact to discuss the notice, and
  6. any warnings regarding re-entry to or use of the place of application specified on the product label or the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority permit.

(22) Pesticide use warning signs will be of standardised designs that are clear and understandable by staff, students and the public attending University premises.

Communication with the University’s communities

(23) The Campus Facilities Manager, FM will:

  1. advise the FM central point of contact of the details of the proposed application,
  2. publish a notification of pesticide use on the University’s “What's New portal” electronic bulletin board using the Pesticide Notification Templates,
  3. send advice to the Student Communications Officer, for publication on the relevant student news platform, and
  4. advise building occupants directly via signage or other means (e.g. email).

Record keeping

(24) Records are to be kept in accordance with the Pesticides Act 1999 and the Pesticides Regulation 2017 and the Safe Use of Pesticides Including Herbicides in Non-Agricultural Workplaces, Code of Practice (WorkCover NSW) 2006.

(25) Chemical application records must be retained (as a paper record) for a minimum of three years.

(26) Pesticide application records are also to be kept with the completed work orders in the FM's electronic maintenance system.

Review of the procedure

(27) This procedure shall be reviewed every three years. The review shall include:

  1. an audit of procedure implementation,
  2. an audit of compliance with pesticide safety data sheet requirements,
  3. review of any comments, complaints or concerns,
  4. with reference to the results of audits and received submissions, make recommendations for modifications (if applicable) to this document, and
  5. review referenced documents, codes of practice and the legislation.

Associated information

(28) This procedure must be read in conjunction with the:

  1. Campus Pesticide Application Plans, and
  2. Pesticide Notification Templates.

Contact details

(29) For further information about the University’s pesticide notification procedures, contact:

Charles Sturt University
Facilities Management

Telephone: +61 2 6338 6336

Web address: Division of Facilities Management website
Campus maps: Division of Facilities Management – FMCentral web page
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Section 4 - Glossary

(30) This procedure uses the same terms as defined in the Facilities and Premises Policy. For the purpose of this procedure, the following terms are also defined:

  1. Facilities and Premises Procedure – Pesticide Management and Notification – means the pesticide use notification plan as per the Pesticides Regulation 2017.
  2. Pesticide application - means placement of pesticide by hand or mechanical means and may include use of hand operated, vehicle or aircraft mounted spray equipment, fumigation of enclosed spaces, placement of baits or pellets, coating or soaking of timber products and automated dosing of vessels, ducting or piping systems.
  3. Safety data sheets (SDS) - are documents that provide critical information about hazardous chemicals, including information on the chemical’s identity and ingredients, health and physical hazards, safe handling and storage procedures, emergency procedures and disposal considerations.