Everything You Need to Know about the Clean Water Act

Report
EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE CLEAN
WATER ACT . . .RELATED TO WATER SUPPLY
KATHERINE SLAUGHTER
FORMER ATTORNEY,
SOUTHERN ENVIRONMENTAL LAW CENTER
FORMER CHARLOTTESVILLE CITY COUNCIL MEMBER
MY TOPIC:
FEDERAL LAWS RELATED TO WATER SUPPLY
CLEAN WATER ACT
401 CERTIFICATION BY STATE DEQ UNDER
STATE WATER CONTROL LAW
CLEAN WATER ACT
1969 – Cuyahoga River on Fire
1972 – Clean Water Act (CWA) :
RESTORING &
MAINTAINING CHEMICAL, PHYSICAL & BIOLOGICAL INTEGRITY OF THE
NATION’S WATERS.
NATIONAL POLICY TO CONTROL POINT SOURCES,, E.G.., PIPED
DISCHARGES, NOT WATER SUPPLY.
SOME NON-POINT SOURCES ARE NOW “POINT”
LARGE SCALE POULTRY, HOG, BEEF OR DAIRY
FACILITIES: INDUSTRIAL SIZED ANIMAL
PRODUCTION CALLED CONFINED ANIMAL
FEEDING OPERATIONS (CAFOs)
MUNICIPAL STORMWATER
CONSTRUCTION STORMWATER
LIKELIHOOD OF DISCHARGES >>> CWA.
Not A CAFO
But Also Not Regulated >>>>>
CWA WORKS AS A FEDERAL-STATE COOPERATIVE
PROGRAM
EPA SETS FEDERAL WATER QUALITY STANDARDS
AND REGULATIONS THAT THE STATE AGREES
TO FOLLOW (OR ALLOW EPA TO REGULATE) -“DELEGATION”
VA IS A DELEGATED STATE – VDEQ
PROVISIONS OF CLEAN WATER ACT
401STATE CERTIFICATION (VA)
402 BASIC NPDES (POLLUTION DISCHARGE
PERMIT) (VA)
404 PERMIT TO DISCHARGE FILL (ALTER/
DESTROY WETLANDS) (Corps of Engineers
and VA)
RESEARCH
OTHER PROGRAMS – INCLUDING CB
402 - CORE CWA PROGRAM DESIGNED TO END
POLLUTION
•
EPA – SETS WQ STANDARD – STATE FOLLOWS
•
EPA DELEGATES ADMINISTRATION/IMPLEMENTATION TO
STATE
•
VA ISSUES PERMITS FOR DISCHARGE OF POLLUTION–
NPDES/VPDES
• SEWAGE TREATMENT PLANTS (STPs, INDUSTRIES)
E..G. MOORE’S CREEK STP, CVILLE, RICH STP;
HOPEWELL STP, ETC.
INDIVIDUAL PERMITS OR GENERAL PERMITS?
INDUSTRY: Large Complex Facilities
SMITHFIELD FOODS
VIRGINIA DOMINION, ETC.
GENERAL PERMITS
Seafood Processing Facilities
Petroleum Contaminated Sites and Hydrostatic
Tests.
Discharges of Storm Water Associated With
Industrial Activity.
Non-Metallic Mineral Mining
Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations
Concrete Products Facilities
Car Wash Facilities
Domestic Sewage for Facilities at 1000 or less
Gallons per Day.
BUT… IN ADDITION TO SECTION 402 PERMITS . . .
WATER SUPPLY PROJECTS ALSO INVOLVE
WATER QUALITY. . . REMOVING WATER FROM
A STREAM CHANGES ITS CHEMISTRY
CWA 401 & 402 APPLY:
SECTION 401 –STATE CERTIFICATION OF WATER
QUALITY IMPACTS OF PROJECT
SECTION 404 – DISCHARGE OF FILL INTO
WATERS OF US (INCLUDING WETLANDS) WITH
POLLUTANTS
404 PERMIT
U.S. ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS
(1899 RIVERS AND HARBORS ACT)
WATERS OF US: IF WETLANDS OR STREAMS
DESTROYED OR ALTERED DUE TO DEVELOPMENT,
INCLUDING WATER SUPPLY, CORPS OF
ENGINEERS (NORFOLK OFC) MUST ISSSUE
PERMIT.
MITIGATION (3-1) USUALLY REQUI.RED.
EX: PROPOSED MATTAPONI RESERVOIR – OVER 400
ACRES WETLAND & 21 MI STREAMS – PROJECT
DENIED, ACCEPTED, DROPPED BY CITY
OFNEWPORT NEWS
401: BUT ALSO HERE’S WHERE WATER SUPPLY
CAN COME IN
WHENEVER A 404 PERMIT ISSUED, E.G., FOR A
WATER SUPPLY OR OTHER PROJECT,
STATE HAS THE AUTHORITY UNDER 401 TO
ENSURE THAT THE PERMIT MEETS ALL STATE
REQUREMENTS.
(CORPS REQUIREMENTS ARE USUALLY THE
MORE STRINGENT ONES)
CONFORMANCE WITH STATE LAW?
INSTREAM FLOW? PROTECTIVE OF EXISTING
USES? (RECREATIONAL, AQUATIC LIFE,
“FISHABLE, SWIMMABLE”)
COMPLIANCE WITH COASTAL MANAGEMENT
PLAN UNDER CZMA.
OTHER IMPACTS: FISHERIES/WILDLIFE,
IENDANGERED PLANTS/HABITAT.
VIRGINIA WATER PROTECTION PERMIT - 401
CERTIFICATION – SCOTT KUDLAS
Includes: PROJECTED NEED
PROJECTED SUPPLY AND DEMAND
WQ STANDARDS, LIMITS AND OTHER CONDITIONS,
INCLUDING INSTREAM FLOW.
PERMIT BASED SOLELY ON WQ ISSUES
ALTERNATIVES ANALYSIS TO MEET NEED, INCLUDING
PROJECTIONS, FLOW REGIMES
EMERGING ISSUES IN WATER SUPPLY?
HERE’S BUT ONE LIKELY TO BE A HOT ISSUE IN THE
VIRGINIA GENERAL ASSEMBLY NEXT YEAR 2012
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
URANIUM MINING AND MILLING IN SOUTHSIDE
VIRGINIA AND BEYOND
FOCUS ON CHATHAM /DANVILLE AREA
URANIUM MINING/MILLING IN PIEDMONT
COULD INVOLVE A LARGER PORTION OF VA
URANIUM MINING & MILLING
•
Va legislative moratorium on mining of uranium since 1982
•
Federal Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) regulates
processing/milling of U under Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation
Control Act (UMTRCA):
 Disposal of & stabilization of mill tailings BUT NOT MINING
 State may assume federal role if State has same/better
regulations than NRC.
 Virginia likely to become an Agreement State for uranium
mill tailings.
When U milled out, Federal or state takes ownership of
former milling site.
•
EPA OVERSIGHT OVER WATER LEAVING SITE
•LOOPHOLE: EPA has a no-discharge-of-water rule
EXCEPT in instances where the amount of precipitation
exceeds evaporation.
• VA - significant storm events where precipitation
exceeds evaporation.
• Stormwater could legally be discharged during
storm events.
•LOOPHOLE: EPA does not regulate mining
overburden.(waste rock with U)
•Lake Gaston – water supply for Virginia Beach, Norfolk,
Portsmouth & NC cities – VB Study I >>>>>>>
“Depending upon whether it is wet or dry following a
significant contamination event, it could take two
months or two years to flush dissolved and suspended
contaminants from both reservoirs.”
Virginia Beach Study Presentation, February 7, 2011
to National Academy of Sciences Study Group
QUESTIONS REGARDING CWA ?

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