Favorable Water Board Action - May 2015

May 11, 2015: GREAT NEWS! Today the Regional Water Quality Control Board issued a Tentative Order for the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit under the Clean Water Act covering municipal stormwater discharges. What this order does, subject to changes after public hearings in June and July, is effectively a ZERO TOLERANCE edict preventing storm drain emissions other than storm water.

This means: No contaminants whatsoever. No fertilizers. No herbicides. No algicides. No surfactants. No blue dye to fight lagoon algae. It also means restrictions and monitoring at construction sites, which would ostensibly prevent the use of oil-based drilling fluids like what (I suspect) was responsible for the January 2015 Seabird Massacre. (This will be covered in a paper I plan to submit and speak on at the June10 hearing.)

PLEASE SEND ME YOUR COMMENTS AND INPUT TO BE INCLUDED. You can e-mail me or attach a comment here on the blog.

PRIMARY AMONG MY ISSUES ARE: a) that lagoons, catchbasins and all other inland bodies of water draining into San Francisco Bay be deemed the same as stormwater for the purposes of this regulation and b) the use of drilling fluid under, in or near all such bodies of water be specifically included and tightly controlled.

Following is the text of the Notice:


California Regional Water Quality Control Board
San Francisco Bay Region
1515 Clay Street, Suite 1400, Oakland, CA 94612
NOTICE OF PUBLIC WORKSHOP HEARINGS AND PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD
FOR THE
TENTATIVE ORDER FOR THE
SAN FRANCISCO BAY REGION
MUNICIPAL REGIONALAL STORMWATER PERMIT

Notice is hereby given that the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board’s staff has prepared a tentative order for the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit under the Clean Water Act covering municipal stormwater discharges from the entities listed below (Permittees). This Municipal Regional Stormwater Permit (Draft MRP), if adopted, will replace Permittees’ existing regional NPDES permit. Each Permittee owns and/or operates a municipal separate storm sewer system (MS4) from which stormwater is discharged into receiving waters including Bay Area creeks and rivers, San Francisco Bay, and the Pacific Ocean.

The MRP will require the Permittees to reduce the discharge of pollutants from their MS4s to the maximum extent possible and to effectively prohibit non-stormwater discharges into storm sewers.

The Draft MRP requires Permittee actions in the following areas: municipal operations; new development and redevelopment; industrial and commercial site controls; illicit discharge detection and elimination; construction site controls; public information and outreach; water quality monitoring; and specific pollutant controls, including for pesticides, trash, mercury, PCBs, pathogens, and copper.

The cities of Alameda, Albany, Berkeley, Dublin, Emeryville, Fremont, Hayward, Livermore, Newark, Oakland, Piedmont, Pleasanton, San Leandro, Union City, Alameda County, the Alameda County Flood Control and Water Conservation District, and Zone 7 of the Alameda County Flood Control and Water Conservation District, which have joined together to form the Alameda Countywide Clean Water Program.

The cities of Clayton, Concord, El Cerrito, Hercules, Lafayette, Martinez, Orinda, Pinole, Pittsburg, Pleasant Hill, Richmond, San Pablo, San Ramon, Walnut Creek, the towns of Danville and Moraga, Contra Costa County, Contra Costa County Flood Control and Water Conservation District, which have joined together to form the Contra Costa Clean Water Program.

The cities of Campbell, Cupertino, Los Altos, Milpitas, Monte Sereno, Mountain View, Palo Alto, San Jose, Santa Clara, Saratoga, Sunnyvale, the towns of Los Altos Hills and Los Gatos, Santa Clara Valley Water District, County of Santa Clara, which have joined together to form the Santa Clara Valley Urban Runoff Pollution Prevention Program.

The cities of Belmont, Brisbane, Burlingame, Daly City, East Palo Alto, Foster City, Half Moon Bay, Menlo Park, Millbrae, Pacifica, Redwood City, San Bruno, San Carlos, San Mateo, South San Francisco, The towns of Atherton, Colma, Hillsborough, Portola Valley, and Woodside, the San Mateo County Flood Control District and San Mateo County, which have joined together to form the San Mateo Countywide Water Pollution Prevention Program.

The cities of Fairfield and Suisun City, which have joined together to form the Fairfield-Suisun Urban Runoff Management Program. The City of Vallejo and the Vallejo Sanitation and Flood Control District.

Notice is additionally hereby given that the Water Board will hold two public workshop hearings to receive oral testimony on the Draft MRP as follows:
DATE: Wednesday, June 10, 2015
TIME: 9:00 AM (approximate)
LOCATION: Elihu M. Harris State Building
First Floor Auditorium
1515 Clay Street
Oakland, CA 94612 At this hearing, the Board will accept oral testimony for all provisions of the Draft MRP, except for Provision C.10. – Trash Load Reduction.

DATE: Wednesday, July 8, 2015
TIME: 9:00 AM (approximate)
LOCATION: Elihu M. Harris State Building
First Floor Auditorium
1515 Clay Street
Oakland, CA 94612

At this hearing, the Board will accept oral testimony for Provision C.10. – Trash Load Reduction and any testimony that the Board continued at the June 10, 2015, hearing due to time constraints.
To ensure productive and efficient workshops in which all participants have an opportunity to participate, oral testimony may be time-limited. The Board will not be adopting the Draft MRP at these workshop hearings. The Board will consider adopting the Draft MRP at a future noticed hearing.

Any updates or changes in the date, time, and place of the public workshops will be noticed on the MRP Lyris email list. Any person desiring to receive future notices on the Draft MRP must sign up for the MRP Lyris email list. To sign up for the Lyris list, access the email list subscription form and select “Municipal Regional Stormwater Permit Reissuance” at: http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/resources/email_subscriptions/reg2_subscribe.shtml.

Notice is additionally hereby given that there will be a written public comment period on the Draft MRP. The deadline for receipt of written comments on the Draft MRP is 5:00 p.m. on Friday, July 10, 2015. Written comments should be submitted to the following email address:
mrp.reissuance@waterboards.ca.gov. Please submit all attachments to the email as one electronic file with a file name clearly identifying the commenting entity. Written comments may also be submitted by mail to: Dale Bowyer, 1515 Clay St., Ste. 1400, Oakland, CA 94612.

Persons wishing to file written comments on or objections to the Draft MRP or other aspects of this matter must do so no later than this deadline, so that the comments may be considered. No written comments will be accepted or responded to in writing after that date. Interested persons are invited to attend and express their views at the workshops on this matter.

Pursuant to California Code of Regulations Title 23 section 2050(c), any party who challenges the Board’s action through a petition to the State Water Resources Control Board under Water Code section 13320 will be limited to raising only those substantive issues that were raised before the Board at the hearing or in timely submitted correspondence.

All documents related to the MRP may be inspected at the Water Board office and are also available at: http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/sanfranciscobay/water_issues/programs/stormwater/Municipal/mrp_sw_reissuance.shtml.

If you have any questions regarding this matter, or would like an electronic copy of the documents in compact disk format or a paper copy sent by mail, please contact Dale Bowyer at (510) 622-2323, via U.S. Mail to Dale Bowyer, Regional Water Board, 1515 Clay Street, Suite 1400, Oakland CA 94612, or via email to mrp.reissuance@waterboards.ca.gov.

1 comment:

  1. near all such bodies of water be specifically included and tightly controlled.
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