EPA Publishes Construction Runoff Proposal

January 8, 2009
by JONATHAN RINDE
Client Alert Newsletter Forecast 2009

The federal and state governments continue to tighten requirements regarding the discharge of stormwater. At the federal level, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ("EPA") proposed a new regulation on November 28, 2008 which, if adopted, would require developers, construction companies and others to install controls on their discharges of storm water at certain construction sites. The proposed regulations would establish a national, technology-based floor on measures earth disturbers would need to implement to control sediments emanating from construction sites. At some construction sites, numeric limits for maximum turbidity levels would be imposed in the permits. States are generally following EPA's lead, and adopting increasingly more restrictive requirements, with some states focusing on the regulation of post-construction stormwater discharges. These trends are anticipated to continue, as stormwater continues to be identified in the scientific literature as a significant cause of water quality degradation.