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Water: Water Quality Standards Academy

Basic Course: Supplemental Topics (NPDES Permit 2)

Introduction: Control of Point Sources

NPDES Permit Program

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A fundamental consideration for achieving CWA goals is the ability to control sources of pollutants that may be impairing or threatening the quality of navigable waters. In many jurisdictions, the discharge of pollutants from point sources is a significant factor to address when managing the condition of water bodies.

Pollutant discharges from point sources are controlled through the NPDES permit program. That is, the CWA prohibits the discharging of pollutants from a point source into a "water of the United States" unless the operation has been granted an NPDES permit that explicitly allows discharges by establishing:

  • What and how much of a pollutant can be discharged into a receiving water.
  • What monitoring and reporting on discharges are required.
  • Other conditions as needed to carry out the intent of the CWA.
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Resource. EPA’s comprehensive regulations that implement the NPDES program are at 40 CFR Part 122. Exit EPA Disclaimer
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Learn More. Definitions of three key terms for the NPDES permit program. Proceed to the Learn More Topic. » (Note: This link launches a pop-up window.)

Disclaimer:
For informational purposes only–Not official statements of EPA policy.

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