Community-Based Pretreatment Tool

CONTROLS — Mechanisms to Control Industrial Users

Municipalities that are putting a voluntary pretreatment program in place have flexibility in how they apply controls to commercial and industrial dischargers. The municipal legal authority will define the options available to control discharges. The Industrial Waste Survey will define the various classes of commercial and industrial dischargers. The most common pollutants regulated through an Industrial User Permit include metals, BOD5 and Total Suspended Solids (TSS).

The most common control mechanism is requiring Best Management Practices (BMPs) to control discharges from food establishments (FOG controls), waste haulers, dental businesses, and dry cleaners. These BMPs are often applied through a letter, a notice of BMP requirements, or other methods.

Voluntary pretreatment program has the flexibility to use a variety of control mechanisms, as long as those are have been included in the municipal legal authority as part of the adopted local ordinance.

DEQ/EPA-approved pretreatment programs are required to issue permits to Significant Industrial Users that have specific criteria and limitations.

Ideas to consider for control mechanisms include:

  • BMPs for Dental Offices: Clean Water Services has prepared a brochure that summarizes these BMPs.

  • Dental office inspection form: An example inspection form for inspecting dental offices is available for wastewater utilities in two formats: to download and use as an editable form (PDF format) or to customize as required (Word document).

  • Dental Survey form: The City of Springfield has a dental office annual survey available on their website.

  • FOG: The Preferred Pumper program is an example of a best management practices based program that has been effective at reducing Fats, Oil and Grease (FOG) from food service establishments.

  • Use a Discharge Authorization Letter that details the limits and sampling requirements. Here’s an example from the City of Vancouver. (see Vancouver letter of discharge example)

  • Breweries and Wine Making: The City of Eugene has a set of BMPs for breweries and wine making.

  • Photo Processors and Mobile Vehicle Washing: The City of Portland uses alternative discharge control mechanisms for photo processors and mobile vehicle washing programs. More about this City of Portland program is available online.

  • Photo processors: The City of Springfield uses an annual survey to verify compliance of photo processors—a copy of the survey is posted on their website.


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