Industrial Storm Water programs apply to industrial facilities that may expose materials to storm water. The purpose of the industrial storm water program is to ensure that storm water discharging from a facility does not impact “waters of the state.” However, each state implements their storm water programs differently. The federal EPA issues a federal multi-sector permit, but each state is given the option to either follow the federal permit, issue their own version of the federal permit or...Read More »
Part 2 of 2 - Application and Termination of Permit Coverage
In part 1 of this series we talked about Ohio EPA’s fourth generation NPDES statewide construction storm water general permit OHC000004. In this follow up we will discuss some specific key issues facing permittees.
If you are a new discharger (new construction project), initial coverage is initiated by submitting a Notice of Intent (NOI) form, and the appropriate application fee, and completed SWPPP at least 21 days prior to the...Read More »
Maintaining EH&S compliance in today’s economy can be a challenge. With limited resources, stricter budgets, and tighter regulatory control, EH&S managers are being asked to do more with less. Balancing the budget coupled with understanding the associated risks at your facility can be a daunting task as cost-cutting measures can often lead to non-compliance and financial penalties.
When companies are faced with the prospect of cutting costs, overhead, salaries and workforce are often reduced...Read More »
The Federal Water Pollution Control Act (Clean Water Act) was enacted in 1972. This legislation provided for United States waters to be protected from the discharge of pollutants from any point source unless those discharges are in compliance with a National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit. In 1987 the Clean Water Act Amendments (the Water Quality Act of 1987) adopted regulations to require the NPDES system to include storm water discharges associated with construction...Read More »
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) violations can be time consuming to correct, expensive, and bring a negative light to a company’s overall reputation. Repeat violations, or willful or knowing violations, can further compound these issues exponentially. Both agencies view repeat violations as a company’s indifference to environment and safety regulations in general and can put you in a high risk category. In fact, EPA and OSHA have a...Read More »
Tomorrow on Thursday, May 16 at 10:00 a.m. August Mack will present a free webinar on the subject of "When Do I Need an Asbestos Survey?" Register here to attend for free. Did you know an asbestos inspection is required prior to any demolition or renovation project regardless of the building’s age? It’s true, and probably one of the most over looked environmental regulations to date. However, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) National Emission Standard for Hazardous Air...Read More »
Traditional Environmental Due Diligence typically consists of a Phase I and II Environmental Site Assessment (ESA). The goal of the Phase I/II ESA is to identify and quantify environmental liabilities associated with real estate. August Mack typically represents buyers and their lenders during the environmental due diligence process and the Phase I/II ESA findings are often used by our clients to help them understand what is going on with the property. However, it is important to note that...Read More »
EPA is working toward a proposed rulemaking to add a new screening component to OSWER's Hazard Ranking System (HRS), which would allow sites impacted by vapor intrusion or intrusion of other subsurface contamination to be evaluated for placement on the Superfund National Priorities List (NPL). Through this change, the HRS could directly consider the human exposure to contaminants that enter building structures from the subsurface environment.
Historically, the use of Institutional Controls (ICs) was associated with large, complex sites involved in U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) cleanup programs, such as Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) Corrective Action and Superfund. The ICs were commonly used in conjunction with removal actions, soil and groundwater remediation, and risk assessment to reduce potential for exposures over the long-term. However, there has been increasing use of Institutional Controls in...Read More »
EPA has made substantial progress during the past year in preparing its final guidance for the vapor intrusion pathway. EPA has extensively engaged stakeholders and considered extensive and substantive public comments received in 2011 and 2012. EPA is working to complete its work expeditiously and issue final Subsurface Vapor Intrusion Guidance so that it can be applied in forthcoming decisions. Comments can be viewed at Regulations.gov (EPA-HQ-RCRA-2002-0033)
figure depicts the migration of volatile chemicals from
contaminated soil and groundwater plumes into buildings. Volatile
chemicals are shown to enter buildings through cracks in the
foundation and openings for utility lines. Atmospheric conditions
and building ventilation are shown to influence vapor
Source: EPA 2008
In extreme cases, the vapors may accumulate in dwellings or occupied buildings to levels that may pose near-term safety hazards (e.g., explosion), acute...Read More »
The federal LUST Trust Fund gives EPA the resources to:
- oversee cleanups by responsible parties;
- enforce cleanups by recalcitrant parties; and
- pay for cleanups at sites where the owner or operator is unknown, unwilling, or unable to respond, or which require emergency action.
EPA may take enforcement action against owners and/or operators of Leaking Underground Storage Tanks (LUSTs) to achieve timely and protective cleanup of contamination. EPA takes enforcement action in response to an UST release if:
- the release poses a major public health or environmental emergency;
- the state or the owner/operator is unable to respond; or
- the state requests assistance from EPA.
EPA controls stormwater and sewer overflow discharges through its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System. NPDES provides guidance to municipalities and state and federal permitting authorities on how to meet stormwater pollution control goals as flexibly and cost-effectively as possible.
Want more information? Contact August Mack today!
A New Phase I ESA Standard: What Will Change and How Does This Affect My Environmental Due Diligence?
The current Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA) American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) standard was last revised in 2005 and is currently referenced as ASTM E 1527-05. ASTM standards have an 8-year shelf life. At that time, there are four courses of action that can be taken; 1) there is no action and the standard sunsets, 2) there is a ballot to withdraw the standard, 3) there is a ballot to re-approve the standard with no change, or 4) the Task Group is reconvened to...Read More »
Don't forget to register now for the August Mack webinar tomorrow (Feb. 28) at 10:00 a.m. on the "Use of Institutional Controls to Facilitate Site Closure." Institutional Controls (ICs) are property or government controls that are used to manage risks and/or control completed or potentially completed exposure pathways. Common ICs include: i) deed restrictions on property (sometimes referred to as “restrictive covenants”), such as prohibiting residential site use on a property, and ii)...Read More »
A Supplemental Environmental Project (SEP) is a new environmentally beneficial project that a company agrees to undertake when settling an enforcement action. The SEP must improve, restore, protect or reduce risks to public health and/or the environment beyond that achieved by compliance with applicable laws. When enforcing environmental laws and regulations, the agency has the authority to incorporate a SEP into the settlement agreement with a company that is separate from and in addition to...Read More »
In September 2008, August Mack’s eCAP® (Compliance Assurance Program) was formally qualified as a Supplemental Environmental Project (SEP) through the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 7. August Mack’s eCAP® program is an Environmental Health and Safety Management System (EMS) that utilizes a team of August Mack experts to routinely and methodically assess and maintain compliance at clients’ facilities. The innovative program includes much more than just...Read More »
As the sustainability movement continues to grow across our nation, more and more people are becoming familiar with the ENERGY STAR program. ENERGY STAR is a joint program of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) designed to cut energy costs for homeowners and businesses in an attempt to protect the environment. ENERGY STAR’s main, and most recognizable service, revolves around qualifying electrical appliances as products that use a significantly...Read More »
If it’s not in writing, it did not happen! Environmental regulations offer some significant challenges to modern businesses. Chief among these may be keeping the right records and keeping them the right amount of time to demonstrate environmental compliance. In the face of these challenges, businesses need to develop clear recordkeeping systems and record retention policies.
Good recordkeeping systems can take on many forms. However, they all have one trait in common; good organization!...Read More »