SCS Engineers’ Jonathan Meronek presents this timely webinar and unpacks the 2021 Federal MSGP. He will discuss potential implications for EPA-covered sites and how the Federal MSGP might shape future state general permits.
Under the Clean Water Act (CWA), industrial regulations have become increasingly stringent. And since approximately 2014, several states have adopted heightened compliance standard(s) for the regulation of industrial stormwater at industrial facilities.
The National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) is one such set of regulations that helps ensure stormwater pollutants of concern are not discharged to streams, creeks, wetlands, rivers, and oceans. With its new Federal Multi-Sector General Permit (MSGP) becoming effective on March 1, 2021, some common fundamental underpinnings are beginning to emerge at both the state and federal levels.
Live Broadcast Dates are May 19 and May 21 at 2:00 pm EDT and 11:00 am Pacific
With the final draft of the new 2020 Federal Multi-sector General Permit (MSGP) imminent, what lessons have we learned from states that have already moved forward with increased National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) regulations for Industrial Stormwater Permittees and Dischargers?
Join Forester University for this live, educational, two-part webinar as returning speaker Jonathan J. Meronek, QISP-ToR, ENV SP, CPESC, QSP/D of SCS Engineers reviews the fundamental changes of the upcoming MSGP and highlights some of the new regulations it sets forth.
We will discuss changes that include Benchmark Exceedance Response mechanisms under Advanced Implementation Measures (AIMs), including Tier 1, 2, & 3 Triggers, Responses, Deadlines, and Exceptions. To assist stormwater dischargers in achieving compliance, we will also look at the “Inspection Only” options for identified “Low Risk” and light manufacturing facilities, potential No Exposure Certifications (NECs), and the proposed modifications for determining background pollutant contributions.
After reviewing the fundamental Draft MSGP tenets, we will then shift our focus to examining the current statewide General Permits of the Pacific States (California, Washington, and Oregon). These states are beginning to see the benefits of overall compliance and better receiving water quality. Under the exceedance and tiered compliance, facilities are now held more accountable and can better compare themselves to other companies within their industry sector. Questions arising from the Exceedance Response Action (ERA) scenario include:
Are they facing the same challenges with elevated pollutants of concern from their facility’s industrial stormwater discharge?
What BMPs have they implemented, and have they been effective in reducing and/or eliminating pollutants in stormwater discharge?
How do 303d water impairments and Total Maximum Daily Loads affect the dischargers?
These become the considerations and strategies for industrial stormwater managers and facility owners as they move from Baseline Tiers to ERA Level 1 and, subsequently, ERA Level 2 Status.
Stormwater regulation is evolving, pushing more responsibility onto dischargers by holding them accountable through categorization based on their ability to meet numeric benchmarks and determining their status based on how they respond and implement effective BMPs. Ultimately, it is up to the industrial permittee to take initiative, with an eye to priorities and feasibility for the future of their stormwater compliance program.
By participating in this webinar, attendees will:
The new Exceedance Response Action (ERA) paradigm has wide-reaching implications for future NPDES permittees of industrial stormwater discharges. This growing regulatory compliance mechanism is already being implemented in California, Washington, and most recently in Oregon. These states are viewed as precursors of future trends throughout the United States, as several key components of the forthcoming Multi-Sector General Permit (MSGP) will influence other states to move toward similar ERA response scenarios and regulations.
Join Forester University for this live, educational, two-part webinar as speaker Jonathan Meronek, QISP ToR, CPESC, QSDP/D, of SCS Engineers discusses the future of the tiered ERA paradigm and why stormwater managers and facility compliance personnel have only begun to come to terms with it. He will help you better understand if your site is covered and how an Industrial Permittee can come into compliance.
The webinar will examine past lessons, including the implementation of effective best management practices, water quality characterizations, and successful compliance strategies. It will also project what the compliance paradigm will look like during the first years of an industrial General NPDES Permit.
Attendees can expect to learn to:
Attendees can expect to earn credits: 2 PDH / 0.2 CEU
Sensitive natural resources include but are not limited to the following: Threatened and Endangered (T&E) species and their habitats, wildlife refuges, wetlands, and tribal burial grounds. These are areas where federal or states have identified protected resources. SCS Engineers has the expertise and credentials to perform surveys for clients with projects requiring the identification of these sensitive resources, along with the regulatory permitting with specialization in threatened and endangered species, wetlands, and critical habitats.
Development and construction often occur near or within areas identified as sensitive natural resources. Responsible developers identify sensitive resources near or within their proposed project area as part of their development plans because protecting our nation’s natural resources is important. The protection of sensitive natural resources is the basis of the Federal Endangered Species Act, Clean Water Act, and National Historical Preservation Act. Projects under consideration in sensitive areas require special permits; without which projects can be shut down causing costly contractor delays and schedule disruptions. Post-permitting and the associated fines can be severe, so even if you are not a conservationist, it makes good sense to complete the permitting process before breaking ground.
When considering a project in potentially sensitive ecological areas, SCS Engineers recommends a constraint analysis be performed. The analysis will determine if the proposed project location is within wetlands, critical habitat, threatened and endangered species range, and other potential constraints. If it is, SCS recommends that a site assessment is performed and initiate agency consultation to protect the sensitive resources.
Both the permitting process and the preliminary ecological assessments are not difficult but do require credentialed specialists. SCS has geologists, hydrologist, hydro-geologists, and environmental compliance professionals nationwide. SCS Engineers even has credentialed biologists for specialized threatened and endangered species monitoring and assessments for several species that include but not limited to the American Bury Beetle, Arkansas Shiner, Arkansas Darter, Topeka Shiner, Neosho Mucket Mussel, Rabbitfoot Mussel, Northern Longear Bat, and Indiana Bat in the Central U.S.
About the Author: Vaughn Weaver
Vaughn Weaver has over 20 years of environmental services experience with a strong background in water quality and bio-monitoring and is currently a senior field technician at SCS in our Wichita office. He provides project assistance to a diverse team of environmental professionals made up of geologists, hydrogeologists, engineers, chemists, and biologists. His responsibilities include surveying project sites, mitigation monitoring, well sampling and monitoring, and report writing for clients.
In addition, he has 15 years of water quality experience with National Pollution Discharge and Emissions Systems (NPDES) for point source and non-point source permits. Vaughn is also a Certified Wetland Delineator – USACOE.
The Industrial General Permit is an NPDES permit that regulates discharges of stormwater associated with industrial activity. Based on the projected revenue and the predicted surplus, SWRCB is working to refine program funding and plans to adjust the current IGP permit fee structure.
Glen Osterhage, Fee Branch Manager for the California State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB), Division of Administrative Services, met with industry leaders on November 3, 2015, to discuss potential changes to the stormwater Industrial General Permit (IGP) fee structure. Meeting attendees included: SCS Engineers, the Industrial Environmental Association (IEA), California Stormwater Quality Association (CASQA), the California Taxpayers Association (CTA), California Chamber of Commerce, the Independent Energy Producers Association (IEPA), and the host – California Manufacturing and Technology Association (CMTA).
The SWRCB funds eight core permit programs through the Waste Discharge Permit Fund, which pays for over 800 staff. California has cut allocations for agency staff funding by approximately $30 million dollars, forcing SWRBC to distribute its cost burden across the permit fee base. Currently, IGP permit fee revenue is $14.4 million (a single permit fee of $1,791 multiplied by approximately 8,035 permittees). However, SWRCB projects higher revenues due to increased enrollment when all newly required permittees file. Core programs are also subsidized with excess funds coming from the Construction Permit fees (excess of $2M over required $2M last year). Based on the current projected revenue and the predicted surplus the SWRCB is working to refine the IGP program funding and plans to adjust the structure of the permit fee from a flat rate to a rate adjusted for facility size, project complexity, and the threat to water quality.
Following the 2017 to 2018 year permit periods, the SWRCB will have better estimates with which they can accurately adjust fees. The SWRCB is exploring the potential for providing fee discounts for benefits or subsidizing other permit compliance cost burdens. For now, the No Exposure Certification (NEC) IGP Permits are likely to remain a flat fee, but their value may change following additional baseline permit data results.
The SWRCB’s revenue goal is, as always, to break-even; any proposed change to the fee structure is not intended to boost agency revenue over expenses. Another goal is to have data readily available for selecting a permit fee tier from the information submitted on the IGP’s online database application (Storm Water Multiple Application & Report Tracking System, SMARTS, smarts.waterboards.ca.gov).
The SWRCB will have additional meetings to collect comments on the proposed change in hopes of creating a consensus with permittees on these impending changes.
SCS Engineers will provide information as it becomes available. Our professionals are available to assist newly required permittees with filing and compliance requirements.