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The Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) issues NPDES permit coverage, or No Potential to Discharge Determinations (NPTDDs) to Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs).


National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permit Program


Part 31, Water Resources Protection, Natural Resources Environmental Protection Act, Public Act 451 of 1994, as amended


Michigan Administrative Code, Rules Administered by EGLE, WRD

Wastewater Discharge Permits (R 323.2196)


 1.  Applicability (activities that require the permit)

All CAFOs in Michigan must obtain NPDES permit coverage, either an individual permit or a certificate of coverage (COC) under the CAFO general permit. A few CAFOs may qualify for a NPTDD from EGLE. CAFOs issued a NPTDD do not need an NPDES permit. CAFOs are defined in Rule 323.2196 and in the CAFO general permit. Links to both can be found on EGLE's CAFO webpage

 2.  Pre-Application Requirements

There are no pre-application requirements. Applicants may hire a consultant for assistance with the permit application process.  As part of the application, applicants must submit a Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plan (CNMP) developed and approved by a certified plan provider.

 3.  Application Submission Requirements

The application for permit coverage shall be filled out, signed, and submitted with the application fee as instructed in the application. Links to permit and NPTDD applications and CAFO-specific instructions can be found on the EGLE's CAFO webpage.

 4.  Procedures and Time-Frame for Obtaining Permit or Approval

Once a completed application has been received, EGLE has up to six months to issue permit coverage or deny the application. Typical time frames are less than that, 2 – 3 months for issuance of a COC and 4-5 months for an individual permit.

 5.  Operational Requirements

CAFO permits allow certain discharges under very limited circumstances. CAFO permits contain requirements for design, operation and maintenance of storage structures, land application requirements and a requirement to develop and submit a CNMP. For details click "General Permit - 2015" on EGLE's CAFO webpage. Other informational and guidance documents are available on that webpage.

 6.  Fees

The current application fee for CAFO permits is $75 for COCs and $400 for individual permits. The current permit annual fee is $150 for COCs and $600 for individual permits and is billed in December of each year the permit remains in effect. There are no fees for NPTDDs.

 7.  Appeal Process

Any person to whom the permit is not acceptable may file a sworn petition with the State Office of Administrative Hearings and Rules of the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, setting forth the conditions of the permit which are being challenged and specifying the grounds for the challenge. The Department may grant a contested case hearing based on those challenges in accordance with the Michigan Act 451, Public Acts of 1994, as amended. The Department may also grant a contested case hearing on a COC issued under a general permit in accordance with Rule 323.2192(c) of the Michigan Administrative Code.

 8.  Public Input Opportunities

Individual permits are public noticed for a minimum 30-day public comment period and COCs for 15 days on the EGLE website under the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit program. The draft permits or COCs may be obtained via the internet: ( - click on ‘Public Notice Search'). A public hearing may be held upon request and if determined appropriate by EGLE.


EGLE, Water Resources Division, P.O. Box 30458, Lansing, Michigan 48909

  • Program Phone: 517-230-3442


Revision Date: December 2019