Revised EPA Permit Makes Site Operators Jointly, Severally Liable
On January 19, 2017, the EPA published the 2017 Construction General Permit (CGP), which becomes effective February 16, 2017, replacing the 2012 version. The five-year permit includes all stormwater discharges at construction sites over an acre in size. The permit covers sites in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and several other states where EPA is the permitting authority. It will serve as a model for similar stormwater programs in states with delegated authority. Sites less than one acre but that are part of a larger overall project are also covered, as are both new and existing sites, new operators of permitted sites, and operators of emergency-related projects.
Though similar to the 2012 CGP, the 2017 version adds several new features. The Federal Register entry highlights nine notable changes: streamlined and simplified language; prohibition of non-stormwater discharges of external building washdown water containing hazardous substances; clarification of certain technology-based effluent limits; additional requirements for notice of permit coverage signs; revised requirements for stockpiles; a modified approach to stabilization deadlines; new requirements for waste containers; limitations for discharge into sensitive waters; and new notice of intent questions.
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