Wastewater Discharge Permits in Washington State
What is a Wastewater Permit?
A wastewater discharge permit is a legal document issued by the Ecology to control the discharge of wastewater to surface and ground waters and to publicly-owned sewage systems
Environmental scientists and engineers write permits. Permits limit the amount and concentrations of contaminants that a facility may discharge and may impose operating conditions when necessary. Permits generally include monitoring and reporting requirements and may include spill prevention planning, and other regulatory activities. Most permits have a five-year lifespan.
Principles of the Permit Program
Our goal is to maintain the quality of state waters by limiting pollutant discharges to the greatest extent possible. Four principles drive the wastewater discharge permit program toward that goal:
Who Needs a Permit?
State permits are required for anyone who discharges waste materials from a commercial, industrial, or municipal operation to ground or to a publicly-owned treatment plant. NPDES permits are required for anyone who discharges to, or has a significant potential to impact, surface waters.
Types of Permits
Ecology issues two types of wastewater discharge permits:
Either permit type may be issued as a state permit (ground water only) or a combined state/NPDES permit for dischargers to both ground water and surface water.
More on Permits
Last updated September 2014
Contact Regional Permit Coordinators for questions on specific permits.
For general questions on wastewater permitting please contact:
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