Thursday, October 06, 2011

EPA Approves District Stormwater Discharge Permit

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has renewed the District’s permit to discharge stormwater into local waterways. The Stormwater Management Division of the DC Department of the Environment (DDOE) manages permit requirements. The DC Water and Sewer Authority (DC Water) provides drinking water to District residents and businesses, collects and treats wastewater, and maintains fire hydrants in the District. DC Water is a semi-autonomous regional entity that is not part of DDOE or the District Government.

Manages the District's Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Permit

The renewal includes:
Significantly reducing rainwater runoff and the huge amount of garbage that comes with it,

Add a minimum of 350,000 square feet of green roofs on city properties,

Plant at least 4,150 trees yearly,

Assure that new properties of 5,000 square feet soak up more than an inch of rainwater over a 24-hour rainfall to keep it from flowing into sewers and into rivers, streams and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay,

Stop more than 100,000 pounds of trash per year from being discharged into the Anacostia River.
The city will have a year and a half to carry out the measures.

The five-year permit only governs the part of the District’s sewer system that separates stormwater and wastewater in 2/3 of the city. An older combined sewer system operates in the other third of the city, frequently dumping untreated stormwater and sewage in waterways when it threatens to back up into homes and businesses during rains. (Wash Post, 10/6/2011, DDOE)

See also: District Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Permit

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