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Community-Based Pretreatment Tool

Some communities may be interested in developing local ordinances and best management practice programs to reduce the discharge of toxics or other problem pollutants to their treatment plant. See an outline of how to develop a voluntary, community-based pretreatment program.

  1. Community-Based Pretreatment Tool
  2. Overall Approachand associated documents
  3. Project Plan
  4. Education and Outreach for Affected Businesses
  5. Developing a Local Ordinanceand associated documents
  6. Mechanisms to Control Industrial Usersand associated documents
  7. Conducting an Industrial Surveyand associated documents
  8. Oversight and Reporting Requirements
  9. Federal and State Pretreatment Regulations
  10. Technical Resources
     

Pretreatment Committee

The largest of Oregon’s wastewater treatment systems are required to have Industrial Pretreatment programs in place to regulate businesses and industries that discharge to their systems.

Corvallis treatment plant
Corvallis, Oregon Treatment Plant

The Pretreatment Committee coordinates pretreatment issues including evolving federal categorical standards, setting local limits, and pollution prevention.

Regulatory Requirements for Pretreatment Programs

Under the federal Clean Water Act, EPA has set requirements for communities to require industries discharging excessive pollutants to treat their wastewater before releasing it to the local municipal sewer system. The objections of the national pretreatment program are:

  • To protect municipal wastewater treatment systems from interferences in the treatment processes caused by industrial wastes,
  • To protect rivers and streams from industrial wastes that might pass through the municipal treatment system untreated,
  • To provide for the beneficial reuse of biosolids as soil conditioners and fertilizers,
  • To protect wastewater personnel who may be affected by wastewater and biosolids in the course of their employment and to protect the general public, and
  • To improve the opportunity to recycle and reclaim wastewater and biosolids from the treatment plant.

In Oregon, the Oregon DEQ operates the federal pretreatment program. Communities required to have an industrial pretreatment program have program requirements included as a permit condition in the appropriate National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit.

Who Is Regulated Under Pretreatment Programs?

All businesses, including industrial, commercial, and government establishments that discharge process wastewater (non-domestic wastewater) are subject to the General Pretreatment Regulations (40 CFR Part 403). For most businesses, this means they must not discharge anything that will adversely affect the sewage system or its works, or the sewage treatment processes including the quality of biosolids generated from the wastewater treatment.

For businesses that discharge significant amount of toxic pollutants or other pollutants in amounts that could potentially be detrimental to the wastewater treatment plant, expanded regulations are necessary. The Pretreatment Program classified these businesses as Significant Industrial Users (SIUs).

 

Significant Industrial Users are required to limit or treat discharges to environmentally acceptable levels.

The types of tools used by municipal wastewater treatment plant utilities to limit industrial discharges can include:

  • Business-specific specific industrial wastewater discharge permits with numerical discharge limitations including self-monitoring and reporting requirements, or
  • Requiring the use of Best Management Practices (BMPs) to reduce pollution in lieu of numerical limitations.

A fact sheet titled, Summary of the National and State Industrial Pretreatment Programs, is available and includes a flow chart illustrating the pretreatment permit issuance process.

Learn more about the EPA pretreatment program as well as the DEQ pretreatment program on their respective websites.


Oregon Communities with Pretreatment Programs

City of Albany
  City of Newberg
City of Bend   City of Portland
City of Canby   Roseburg Urban Sanitary Authority (RUSA)
Clackamas Co. Service District #1 (Water Environment Services)   City of Salem
City of Corvallis   City of St. Helens
City of Dallas   City of The Dalles
City of Grants Pass   Tri-City Service District (Water Environment Services)
City of Gresham   City of Troutdale
City of Klamath Falls   City of Wilsonville
City of McMinnville   City of Woodburn
City of Medford   Clean Water Services
Metropolitan Wastewater Management Commission:
City of Eugene / City of Springfield
   

Contact list for the Oregon Pretreatment Program coordinators.


These tools are useful for Oregon Pretreatment Coordinators:

Additional information can be found on DEQ's website, under Water Quality Programs.

All businesses, including industrial, commercial, and government establishments that discharge process wastewater (non-domestic wastewater) are subject to the General Pretreatment Regulations (40 CFR Part 403). For most businesses, this means they must not discharge anything that will adversely affect the sewage system or its works, or the sewage treatment processes including the quality of biosolids generated from the wastewater treatment.

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