Category: Special Topics in Environmental Management

The Cost of Clean Water

EPA estimates that there are 156,000 water systems in the United States, with more than 94 percent serving fewer than 3,300 persons. Obtaining a representative financial picture for such a large universe of regulated entities is a complex undertaking. However, the Agency periodically attempts to do so in its Drinking Water Infrastructure Needs Survey and […]

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SWPPPs–Most Often Overlooked Points

Industrial stormwater requirements are contained in national pollutant discharge elimination system (NPDES) permits; the critical element in such permits is development and implementation of a stormwater pollution prevention plan (SWPPP). These compliance tips cover key points that are sometimes overlooked in company SWPPPs and related compliance activities. Except in a relatively few cases where individual […]

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Stormwater FAQs Roundup

Do I need a NPDES permit if my stormwater exposure is only in the parking lot? It may depend on several factors, including, but not limited to, the proximity of the parking lot to surface waters; the size of the parking lot; and the type of parking lot surface. A possible option that may apply […]

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Florida’s Water Quality Standards and What It Means for Your State

Now, the interest in Florida is high because it is the first time EPA has taken over a water quality standards-setting process from a state. Stakeholders are wondering if this precedent will be repeated in other regions of the country. EPA’s Action In November 2010, EPA issued new numeric water quality criteria for phosphorus and […]

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EPA’s Strategy for Improving CWA

These new threats are so widespread that EPA has released a strategy to place more emphasis on protecting healthy waters. And, existing resources may have to be spread even thinner to meet standards. According to EPA, sources of stress vary regionally, but mainly comprise agriculture; stormwater runoff; habitat, hydrology and landscape modification; invasive species; the […]

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15 Tips for Developing and Implementing Your SWPPP

Permit coverage must be obtained by either the facility owner or the operator. These are frequently the same. However, if they are different, the responsibility to obtain coverage falls on the one who has day-to-day operational control at the facility. So if the owner does not have operational control, the operator bears the responsibility to […]

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The 2 Big Steps to SPCC Compliance

Step 1 The first step is performance-based. This means you have to acquire and maintain the equipment needed to prevent oil spills. In the context of the rule, managers have flexibility in selecting the type of prevention equipment that works best at the best price and ease of operation and maintenance for their specific facilities. […]

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SWIMS for SPCC Training

SWIMS is an easy acronym you can use for SPCC training to help your workers remember what to do after a spill has occurred: Stop the leak. (e.g., shut the valve, shut off ventilation, shut off all ignition sources in the immediate area) Warn others. Call spill response coordinator, supervisor, and first responders. Isolate the […]

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Don’t Have an SPCC Training Program? You Need One

Here’s a checklist to get you started on developing an SPCC training program that works. Are employees familiar with spill prevention procedures? Are employees familiar with spill prevention/control equipment used at the facility? Does your facility have written procedures for inspecting/testing oil spill containment systems? Have appropriate personnel been properly instructed in the operation and […]

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SPCC Plan FAQ Roundup

My facility is required to have a SPCC plan. I am a P.E. and was wondering if I can write and certify my plan. If you are licensed as a professional engineer, you may write and certify your facility’s SPCC plan. You do not need to be certified in the state in which the facility […]

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