The Washington Department of Ecology is soliciting public comment on a new permit that regulates wastewater discharges connecting with fruit packing.

The permit, required of each fruit packer, makes sure that nearby lakes, rivers and groundwater are protected when fruit packers manage wastewater from their facilities.

The introduction of a new fungicide for use by the industry is also taken into consideration in the permit. Wastewater will be stored in lined evaporative lagoons when the proposed fungicide, called difenoconazole, is used. This will allow researchers to collect data and assess risks associated with the fungicide without delaying the renewal of the permit, according to Ecology.

For more information or to comment, see www.ecy.wa.gov/programs/wq/permits/fruit_packers. Comments on the draft permit are due by June 17.