Thursday, May 17, 2018

South Dakota Industrial Permit Reauthorization

South Dakota DENR General Permit for Stormwater Discharges Associated with Industrial Activities expired September 30, 2017, and has been administratively extended.

 DENR has sent a renewal notice to each permitted facility with instructions for submitting a Notice of Intent for Reauthorization and a Certification of Applicant form. DENR is currently processing all of the reauthorizations and preparing to send out approval letters to those who reauthorized. The new general permit was not reissued before September 30, 2017; however, if DENR receives a reauthorization form, a facility's permit coverage continues until the new general permit is issued. DENR will notify permitted facilities once the new general permit has been issued.

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New Permit Requires Update To SWPPP For South Dakota Sites

Effective April 1, 2018, South Dakota's General Permit for Stormwater Discharges Associated with Construction Activities was reissued. New applications for permits must be submitted at least 15 days prior to the project start date on the new forms beginning May 1, 2018. The 2018 South Dakota Legislature also passed Senate Bill 25 which authorized new stormwater permit fees. Effective July 1, 2018, new construction Notice of Intents (NOIs) must include the new fee.

SWPPP and Solid Waste Controls At Large Residential Construction Project

The new stormwater discharge permit included new requirements for a stormwater pollution prevention plan, or SWPPP. Existing Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plans need to be updated by October 1, 2018.For projects that discharge stormwater to a water body listed as impaired under section 303(d) of the Federal Clean Water Act due to sediment, suspended solids, or turbidity, the SWPPP must identify the water body and impairment and must describe and conform to any Wasteload Allocation (WLA) for the water body.

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Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Spill Plan Requirements For Iowa SARA 313 Reporting Facilities

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources general permit for industrial stormwater water discharges was revised in 2018 and the new permit became effective on March 1, 2018. The revised permit includes additional requirements which apply to those facilities that report under SARA 313, also known as the Toxic Release Inventory or TRI.

 Storm water pollution prevention plans for facilities subject to reporting requirements under SARA Title III, Section 313 for chemicals which are classified as "Section 313 water priority chemicals" are required to include a discussion of the facility's conformance with the appropriate guidelines listed below: In areas where Section 313 water priority chemicals are stored, processed or otherwise handled, appropriate containment, drainage control and/or diversionary structures shall be provided. At a minimum, one of the following preventive systems or its equivalent shall be used:
  • curbing, culverting, gutters, sewers or other forms of drainage control to prevent or minimize the potential for storm water run-on to come into contact with significant sources of pollutants; or
  • roofs, covers or other forms of appropriate protection to prevent storage piles from exposure to storm water, and wind blowing.

 If the installation of structures or equipment is not economically achievable at a given facility, the facility shall develop and implement a spill contingency and integrity testing plan which provides a description of measures that ensure spills or other releases of toxic amounts of Section 313 water priority chemicals do not occur. A spill contingency and integrity plan must include, at a minimum:
  • a description of response plans, personnel needs, and methods of mechanical containment; steps to be taken for removal of spilled Section 313 water priority chemicals;
  • access to and availability of sorbents and other equipment.
  • The testing component of the alternative plan must provide for conductingintegrity testing of storage tanks at least once every five years, and conducting integrity and leak testing of valves and piping a minimum of every year; and
  • A written and actual commitment of manpower, equipment and materials required to comply with the provisions of the permit and to expeditiously control and remove quantities of Section 313 water priority chemicals that may result in a toxic discharge.

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Key Changes To New MPCA General Permit

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) has issued a draft NPDES/SDS permit to control pollution generated from runoff associated with construction activities discharging into waters of the State of Minnesota.The draft permit will replace the current general permit which will expire on August 1, 2018. Some of the key revisions in the draft permit include:

Application and permit coverage effective date

MPCA is proposing to omit the mandatory 7 day waiting period. However, payment confirmation is required before the MPCA can issue permit coverage. The waiting period of “seven (7) calendar days” has been replaced with “upon completing the payment process”. All project proposers must obtain NPDES coverage electronically. The online application assures that all of the questions are completed and requires the user to certify that a SWPPP has been prepared for the project. MPCA is also proposing to omit the mandatory 30 day waiting period. For projects that require a SWPPP review before coverage is issued, the MPCA will grant coverage upon the completion of the application and payment process and after the MPCA has made a determination that the SWPPP meets all of the permit requirements. Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan content The requirements for SWPPP content have been re-written and re-ordered for clarity.

SWPPP Amendments

In order to prevent contractors from deviating from the SWPPP and selecting inappropriate BMP option with no regard to the specific site conditions, the MPCA has added the following language regarding SWPPP amendments: “All SWPPP changes must be done by one of the individuals described in item 21.4 or item 21.5 or another qualified individual. Changes involving the use of a less stringent BMP must include a justification describing how the replacement BMP is effective for the site characteristics.”

Documentation when the volume control standard cannot be achieved

For those projects where the full volume reduction requirement cannot be met on site, (e.g., the site has infiltration prohibitions), the permittee must document the reasons in the SWPPP.

Documentation of infeasibility

For projects adjacent to surface waters, the current permit requires the preservation of a 50’ buffer unless infeasible. For projects adjacent to special waters or impaired waters, a 100' buffer zone must be preserved. The proposed permit requires permittees to document in the SWPPP why the buffer was not preserved.

Impaired waters and TMDL’s

This section was deleted. MPCA has made a programmatic decision not to include specific implementation activities or BMP’s in TMDL implementation plans for construction activity.

Permanent stormwater management

This section was deleted. The current permit offers permittees an option to follow a municipalities (or other plan approval authority such as a watershed district) stormwater ordinance in lieu of the permit requirements if that municipality is regulated by the state through the Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) program. This provision was intended to reduce duplicate regulations as all regulated MS4 communities should have an ordinance in place that is at least as stringent as the state permit. However, MPCA’s determined many of the ordinances have not been written such that the requirements were at least as stringent as the state requirements and prevented the MPCA from taking any action if the permittees plans were approved by the municipality.

Permanent stormwater management

Projects that will result in a net increase in impervious surfaces of one acre or more must include plans for a permanent stormwater treatment system. Permittees are still expected to provide some type of volume reduction treatment if the site is conducive for stormwater infiltration. If the site is not conducive to stormwater infiltration (see item 16.14 through 16.22) other types of systems must be utilized such as a wet sedimentation basin. The permit will still offer flexibility for linear projects or projects where bedrock limits any type of stormwater management.

Infiltration prohibition

The proposed permit would prohibit infiltration systems constructed as part of the project regardless of whether or not the CSW permit requires stormwater management if the site receives runoff from vehicle fueling and maintenance areas. Infiltration requirement The current permit requires “appropriate on-site testing consistent with the recommendations found in the Minnesota Stormwater Manual to verify soil types…”. The manual recommends a certain number of on-site soil tests depending on the size of the system. The proposed permit specifically requires permittees to provide at least one soil boring, test pit or infiltrometer test in the area of each infiltration system for determining infiltration rates. The proposed permit allows field tested rates to be used with a safety factor of 2 or permittees may use the infiltration rate chart found in the Minnesota Stormwater Manual to determine design infiltration rates based on soil type.

Infiltration prohibition

The current permit prohibits constructing infiltration systems in areas with contaminated soil or groundwater. The current language states that infiltration is prohibited in: “areas where high levels of contaminants in soil or groundwater will be mobilized by the infiltrating stormwater.” The proposed permit includes additional language describing the steps permittees are expected to take to demonstrate compliance with this requirement. The proposed language is as follows: "Permittees are prohibited from constructing infiltration systems where high levels of contaminants in soil or groundwater may be mobilized by the infiltrating stormwater. Permittees must either complete the MPCA's site screening assessment checklist or conduct their own assessment to determine the suitability for infiltration. The assessment must be retained with the SWPPP. For more information and to access the MPCA's screening assessment tool see the Minnesota Stormwater Manual”.

Infiltration prohibitions for Drinking Water Supply Management Areas (DWSMA)

The current permit prohibits infiltration anywhere within a DWSMA. The proposed permit limits the prohibition to "within an Emergency Response Area (ERA) as defined by the Department of Health" and "areas within a Drinking Water Supply Management Area (DWSMA) as defined in Minn. R. 4720.5100, subp. 13, classified as having high or very high vulnerability, unless a regulated MS4 Permittee has performed a higher level of engineering review sufficient to provide a functioning treatment system and to prevent adverse impacts to groundwater."

Filtration systems

The following requirement has been added to the filtration system item: "The filter media must not be installed until the contributing drainage area has been constructed and fully stabilized unless rigorous erosion prevention and sediment controls (e.g., diversion berms) are provided to keep sediment and runoff completely away from the filtration area."

Wet sedimentation basin requirement

A new requirement was added to the proposed permit requiring an impermeable liner to be included in the design of a basin located in active karst terrain.

Ditch stabilization methods

The current permit specifically states that some less effective stabilization methods such as mulch cannot be used in ditches or swales for stabilization and permittees must rely on more robust practices such as erosion control blankets. The proposed permit allows permittees more flexibility for the type of stabilization chosen for a ditch bottom if the slope is less than 2%. Additionally, as with all BMP requirements in the permit, If the selected BMP is found to be inadequate at minimizing erosion from ditches or swales, another more effective BMP must be utilized.

Sediment controls near stockpiles

The proposed permit specifically states that perimeter controls are required near the base of stockpiles. This change in language better clarifies that stockpile perimeter controls are required in addition to the perimeter sediment controls required in item 9.2. This does not represent a change in MPCA policy regarding stockpile management.

50 foot buffer

The current permit requires redundant sediment controls around surface waters if a 50 foot natural buffer cannot be maintained. The proposed permit requires that the sediment control practices must be spaced at least 5 feet apart. The MPCA believes that proper spacing for sediment storage between the practices is necessary in order to function properly. Language was also included to relieve permittees of the spacing requirement if there are site constraints.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Revised Georgia EPD Construction Permits

Georgia EPD has reissued general permits for stormwater discharge from construction sites. As background, NPDES General Permit No. GAR100000 for storm water discharges associated with construction activity was issued in 2000 and regulated construction activities that disturbed five (5) or more acres. In 2003, the permit was reissued as three general permits that regulate construction activities that disturb one (1) or more acres: NPDES Permit No. GAR100001 - regulates stand-alone construction sites, NPDES Permit No. GAR100002 - regulates infrastructure construction sites, and NPDES Permit No. GAR100003 - regulates common development construction sites.

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Summary of Changes to Permit

  • The term “projects” has been changed to “sites” for consistency with the permit definitions.
  • The draft permits contain changes as a result of EPD’s implementation of the NPDES Electronic Reporting Rule. Beginning on the effective date of the permit, All Notices of Intent (NOI), Modifications and Notices of Terminations (NOT) must be submitted through EPD’s electronic submittal portal. EPD is preparing an electronic method for submitting sampling reports. ES&PC Plans required to be submitted to the EPD District Offices must now be submitted electronically through EPD’s electronic submittal portal or as a PDF on CD-ROM or other storage device.
  • All references to anionic polyacrylamide (PAM) have been replaced by “flocculants or coagulants”, and “matting or blankets” has been replaced with “slope stabilization” to be consistent with the most recent Manual for Erosion and Sediment Control.
  • BMP options which were no longer “over and beyond” have been removed from the options to address impaired waters.
  • The permit now requires a large sign (minimum 4 feet x 8 feet) must be posted on site by the actual start date of construction. The sign must be visible from a public roadway. The sign must identify : (1) the construction site, (2) the permittee(s), (3) the contact person(s) along with their telephone number(s), and (4) the permittee-hosted website where the ES&PC Plan can be viewed. The sign must remain on site and the ES&PC Plan must be available on the provided website until a NOT has been submitted.
  • EPD has added a BMP option to address impaired waters, to conduct inspections during the intermediate grading and drainage BMP phase and during the final BMP phase of the project by a certified Level II design professional to improve overall site management quality control, and to install Post Construction BMPs which remove 80% TSS
  • EPD has clarified that Whenever a permittee finds that a BMP has failed or is deficient (beyond routine maintenance) and has resulted in sediment deposition into waters of the State, the permittee shall submit a summary of the violations to EPD correct such BMP as follows: 
    • When the repair does not require a new or replacement BMP or significant repair, the BMP failure or deficiency must be repaired by the close of the next business day from the time of discovery; 
    • When the repair requires a new or replacement BMP or significant repair, the installation of the new or modified BMP must be completed and the BMP must be operational by no later than seven (7) days from the time of discovery. If it is infeasible to complete the installation or repair within seven (7) days, the permittee must document why it is infeasible to complete the installation or repair within the seven (7) day timeframe and document the schedule for installing or repairing the BMPs and making the BMPs operational as soon as feasible after the seven (7) day timeframe.

Summary of Changes to Erosion, Sedimentation and Pollution Control Plans

Revisions to the requirements for Erosion, Sedimentation and Pollution Control Plans include:
  • For building materials, building products, construction wastes, trash, landscape materials, fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, detergents, sanitary waste and other materials present on the site, provide cover (e.g. plastic sheeting, temporary roofs) to minimize the exposure of these products to precipitation and to stormwater, or a similarly effective means designed to minimize the discharge of pollutants from these areas. Minimization of exposure is not required in cases where exposure to precipitation and to stormwater will not result in a discharge of pollutants, or where exposure of a specific material or product poses little risk to stormwater contamination (such as final products and materials intended for outdoor use).
  • The permit requires permittees to measure and record rainfall within disturbed areas of the site that have not met final stabilization once every 24 hours except any non-working Saturday, non-working Sunday and non-working Federal holiday.

Construction Activities Not Requiring Permit Coverage

EDP has also clarified that permit coverage is not required for discharge of storm water associated with infrastructure road construction sites that consist solely of the installation of cable barriers and guard rail for an existing facility within the existing rights-of-way. The construction activity shall, as a minimum, implement and maintain best management practices, including sound conservation and engineering practices to prevent and minimize erosion and resultant sedimentation, which are consistent with, and no less stringent than, those in the “Manual for Erosion and Sediment Control in Georgia”. In order to be eligible for this exemption the project must comply with the following conditions: (1) no mass grading shall occur on the project, (2) the project shall be stabilized by the end of each day with temporary or permanent stabilization measures, (3) final stabilization must be implemented at the end of the project.

 Permit coverage is also not required for discharge of storm water associated with infrastructure construction sites that consist of the installation of buried utility lines and comply with the following conditions: (1) solely installed via vibratory plow, (2) the conduit does not exceed 4 inches in diameter, and (3) occurs within an existing stabilized right-of-way. The construction activity shall, as a minimum, implement and maintain best management practices, and the following conditions: (1) no mass grading shall occur on the project, (2) no tree clearing, (3) no change in grade, (4) the project shall be stabilized by the end of each day with temporary or permanent stabilization measures, and (5) final stabilization must be implemented at the end of the project.

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Revised New York Industrial Permit Changes Compliance Requirements

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation  has finalized the SPDES Multi-Sector General Permit for Stormwater Discharges from Industrial Activity (MSGP), GP-17-004. The final MSGP was effective on March 1, 2018 and will expire on February 28, 2023. The final MSGP includes both technology and water quality based requirements:
  1. A technology based requirement is a minimum level of treatment for industrial point sources based on currently available treatment technologies and/or Best Management Practices (BMPs).
  2. Water quality based requirements apply if after application of technology based requirements there remains a reasonable potential for contravention of water quality standards at the receiving water.
  Non-Stormwater Discharge At Industrial Facility Identified During SWPPP Inspection
 Non-Stormwater Discharge At Industrial Facility  

 Some of the key changes in the revised permit include:

  • Non-numeric Effluent Limits. The final MSGP contains updated non-numeric effluent limits to align with EPA’s final 2015 MSGP. The updated non-numeric effluent limits include requirements for minimizing exposure, good housekeeping, maintenance, spill prevention and response procedures, and employee training. The associated SWPPP documentation requirements have also been updated to reflect the changes in the permit and will document owner or operator compliance with the nonnumeric effluent limits. 
  • Changes to Sector S (Air Transportation) The final MSGP includes the Airport Deicing Effluent Guidelines promulgated by EPA in 2012 (40 CFR Part 449) and EPA’s final 2015 MSGP for this sector. These updated conditions in the final MSGP include numeric effluent limits and monitoring, reporting and recordkeeping requirements outlined in 40 CFR 449.20. 
  • Semi-Annual Monitoring and Discharge Monitoring Reports (DMRs) The final MSGP increases the frequency for Benchmark and Numeric Effluent Limit monitoring and reporting from once per year to twice per year. With these changes, a separate submission of a Corrective Action Form will no longer be necessary to report results of follow-up benchmark monitoring as the semi-annual DMR data will allow the Department to track the effectiveness of any corrective actions. If there is an exceedance reported on a semi-annual DMR, the subsequent semi-annual DMR will show if the pollutant of concern has been abated to levels that are below the specified permit numeric effluent limits or benchmarks. In addition, the final MSGP requires that the Annual Certification Report (ACR) be submitted by January 28 of each year. The ACR includes a description of the exceedance, corrective measures and long-term preventative actions taken. 
  • Electronic reporting The final MSGP requires electronic reporting of DMRs through EPA's electronic reporting system, NetDMR. This change is required by EPA’s E-reporting rule (Federal Register, Vol. 80, No. 204 (October 22, 2015)). The final MSGP allows the use of electronic filing of the Notice of Intent (NOI) and the Annual Certification Report (ACR). Paper submission of these reports (other than DMRs) will continue to be an option until December 21, 2020 when that portion of EPA’s E-reporting rule becomes effective in the final MSGP. 
  • Removal of Sectors AD and AE from the Permit The final MSGP removes Sectors AD and AE. These sectors were included in GP-0- 12-001 and reserved for industrial facilities whose activities were not specifically listed in 40 CFR 122.26 but where the Department determined it appropriate for permit coverage due to site-specific circumstances. Removal of Sectors AD and AE from the final MSGP will require those facilities designated by the Department as needing permit coverage to obtain an individual permit, where appropriate. 
  • New BMP Considerations in Specific Sectors: 
  • No Exposure of Copper The final MSGP adds a non-numeric effluent limit for no exposure of copper in Sectors A, F, G, N, and AC. The owner or operator of a facility subject to any of these sectors that discharges to a copper impaired waterbody shall implement BMPs to prevent the exposure of copper sources and copper containing materials or processes to stormwater. These materials need to be protected by a storm-resistant shelter to prevent exposure to rain, snow, snowmelt, and/or runoff. 
  • Mercury Spill Kits The final MSGP includes BMPs to stock and use mercury spill kits for Sector M - Automobile Salvage Yards and Sector N - Scrap Recycling and Waste Recycling Facilities. This addition is necessary for this sector where there is a mercury effluent limit in light of the Department’s updated policy on mercury (TOGS 1.3.10, revised October 2015). 
  • Good Housekeeping in Sector O The final MSGP adds Good housekeeping measures for Chemical Loading and Unloading Areas in Sector O to more closely align with EPA’s 2015 MSGP. 
  • Monitoring Waivers: 
  • Representative Outfall Waiver The final MSGP clarifies the corrective action process to align with the new semiannual monitoring requirements and ensure inclusion of representative outfalls. When corrective actions are triggered due to monitoring exceedances at an outfall, the representative outfall waiver is suspended at all outfalls that were covered by the waiver. These outfalls must then be monitored for all parameters. In order for the Representative Outfall Waiver to again apply, the owner/operator must submit a new Representative Outfall Waiver Form certifying that the results of two consecutive monitoring periods show that the outfall has no exceedances of benchmark monitoring cutoff concentrations. 
  • Alternative Certification of “Not Present” or “No exposure” waiver The Alternative Certification of “Not Present” or “No exposure” waiver for Benchmark monitoring on an outfall-by-outfall or pollutant-by-pollutant basis has been eliminated from the permit. 
  • Timing of Monitoring The final MSGP specifies that if a facility’s permit coverage is effective less than two months from the end of a monitoring period, monitoring begins with the next monitoring period. This has been increased from “less than one month” from the end of a monitoring period. 
  • Definition of "Qualified Person" The definition for qualified person has been added to clarify the qualifications for inspectors. A qualified person may be either a facility employee or hired consultant who is familiar with the day-to-day operations associated with their assigned responsibilities at the facility. The qualified person possesses the knowledge and skills to assess conditions, operations and activities at the facility that could impact stormwater quality and can evaluate the effectiveness of control measures being implemented as part of the requirements of the permit. The owner/operator may designate more than one individual as the qualified person. Additionally, if erosion and sediment controls are to be inspected the qualified inspector must be trained in Department-endorsed Erosion and Sediment control training.   

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Deadline To Reapply For Texas General Permit Coverage Is June 3

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality has renewed 2018 Construction General Permit (CGP) TXR150000 (2018 CGP) which became effective March 5, 2018. Project sites that would like continue their current authorization under the prior permit must reapply during the 90 day grace period which ends June 3, 2018.

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 Some of the important changes in the revised permit included:
  • Added the 2014 and 2015 amendments to the federal effluent limitation guidelines (ELGs) (40 CFR Part 450 - Construction and Development Point Source Category)
  • Added definition of “infeasible.” (Not technologically possible or economically achievable in light of best industry practices.)
  • Added requirement to minimize pollutants in discharges.
  • Added requirement to minimize channel and streambank erosion and scour in the immediate vicinity of discharge points.
  • Replaced the term “surface waters” with “Waters of the U.S.” (Water in the state was placed in the permit, rather than Waters of the U.S.)
  • Added requirement to maximize stormwater infiltration to reduce pollutant discharges, unless infeasible.
  • Added requirement which states that minimizing soil compaction not required where the intended function of a specific area dictates that it is compacted.
  • Added requirement which states that a permittee must preserve topsoil, unless infeasible. The requirement also states that preserving topsoil is not required where the intended function of a specific area of a site dictates that the topsoil will be disturbed or removed.
  • Added requirement which states that stabilization (in arid, semi-arid, and drought-stricken areas) must be completed within a period of time as specified by the permitting authority. The requirement also states that in limited circumstances, stabilization may not be required if the intended function of a specific area of the site necessitates that it remain disturbed.
  • Revised the benchmark monitoring level for Total Suspended Solids (TSS) in the permit from 100 milligrams per Liter (mg/L) to 50 mg/L in discharges of stormwater from concrete batch-mixing plants covered under the permit. This change is consistent with the benchmark monitoring level for TSS that is required for concrete manufacturers and ready-mix concrete plants in the 2016 Multi-Sector General Permit (MSGP) TXR050000.
  • Revised the definition of Construction Activity in Part I, Section B of the permit to more clearly capture “other construction-related activities” (i.e., soil disturbance that can occur from stockpiling of fill material and demolition), construction support activity, and any soil disturbance activities which have occurred in conjunction with construction-related activity and construction support activity.
  • Clarified requirements for operators of small construction activities with low potential for erosion.
  • Revised the language for inspections of construction sites that are consistent with the 2017 EPA CGP and requirements for inspection reports and completion of reports within 24-hours following the inspection.
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