We will continue to see changes on the federal, state and local regulatory front that together will help us manage storm water in a smart, cost-effective manner preserving our water resources. Betsy Powers of SCS Engineers provides an update in her most recent article.
Until a new WOTUS definition is finalized, the U.S. EPA and the U.S. Department of the Army have indicated their intent to re-codify the pre-Obama regulations. The revised WOTUS rule is expected to include looser regulatory requirements, meaning fewer waters will qualify, and therefore, fewer permits will be required.
To speed up approvals of permits for highways, bridges, pipelines and other major infrastructure, an Obama-era executive order aimed at reducing exposure to flooding, sea level rise and other consequences of climate change were rolled back reducing the environmental reviews and restrictions on government-funded building projects in flood-prone areas.
Removing phosphorus from storm water runoff is a hot topic, with partners exploring alternative opportunities to reduce the introduction of phosphorus in runoff, remove it or manage it in watersheds.
More proprietary filters are being used for pretreatment before underground infiltration for redevelopment sites for total suspended solids (TSS) control and where land is limited. The performance of proprietary devices continues to be studied and improved to meet regulatory requirements. Increasing general attention is being paid to emerging contaminants that are problematic in storm water runoff. Among the emerging contaminants of concern are pharmaceutical and personal care products, pesticides, hydrocarbons, and hormones. Many of which are now included within the Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals group.
Betsy Powers is a civil and environmental engineer with SCS Engineers.
How to stay in compliance, do what is right and avoid costly fines and litigation.
The State of California passed regulations in 2015 that impact all craft brewers (SIC Code 2082) who must comply with these regulations by either preparing and implementing a plan or certifying “no exposure” for their facility. While enforcement has so far been limited, the State maintains a searchable database by SIC code, and compliance determinations by government officials, environmental groups and other non-government organizations is comparatively easy.
Based on our research, the current compliance rate for craft brewers in California is relatively low. Those who don’t comply run the risk of fines or citizen suits by non-profits, which can be costly and time-consuming. Find out about the different types of compliance, what is involved, and how to stay in compliance.
A Qualified Industrial Storm Water Practitioner (QISP) can help you answer the following questions:
For more information or help with stormwater compliance in California, contact Dan Johnson at or the California Craft Brewers Association. If you are a CCBA member, you may access slides from a recent Webinar relating to Stormwater Compliance for Craft Brewers here. To sign up for our e-newsletter on stormwater and compliance tips send an email to .