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Water: Stormwater

Conditional No Exposure Exclusion

Operators of industrial facilities in any of the following categories of stormwater discharges associated with industrial activity can certify a "no exposure" condition if their industrial materials and operations are not exposed to stormwater. In general, the 10 categories of industrial activities are:

  • Category One: Facilities subject to federal stormwater effluent discharge standards in 40 CFR Parts 405-471
  • Category Two: Heavy manufacturing (for example, paper mills, chemical plants, petroleum refineries, and steel mills and foundries)
  • Category Three: Coal and mineral mining, and oil and gas exploration and processing
  • Category Four: Hazardous waste treatment, storage or disposal facilities
  • Category Five: Landfills, land application sites, and open dumps with industrial wastes
  • Category Six: Metal scrapyards, salvage yards, automobile junkyards, and battery reclaimers
  • Category Seven: Steam electric power generating plants
  • Category Eight: Transportation facilities that have vehicle maintenance, equipment cleaning or airport deicing operations
  • Category Nine: Treatment works treating domestic sewage with a design flow of 1 million gallons a day or more
  • Category Eleven: Light manufacturing (for example, food processing, printing and publishing, electronic and other electrical equipment manufacturing, and public warehousing and storage).

(Note: Category Ten: Construction Activity is addressed under the construction component of the NPDES stormwater program and is not eligible for the no exposure exclusion.)

If you are in an area where EPA is the permitting authority, you can use the NPDES eReporting Tool for the MSGP (NeT-MSGP) to submit your no exposure certification.

As long as the no exposure condition exists at a certified facility, the operator is excluded from NPDES industrial stormwater permit requirements if the operator notifies the permitting authority at least every five years. Operators of facilities in the above categories of regulated industrial activities that have industrial materials or operations exposed to stormwater must obtain NPDES permit coverage for their stormwater discharges, even if they have previously certified a no exposure condition.

For more information on the conditional "no exposure" exclusion, refer to EPA’s fact sheet: Stormwater Phase II Rule: Conditional No Exposure Exclusion for Industrial Activity (Fact Sheet 4.0) (PDF) (4 pp, 240K, About PDF). See also the Guidance Manual for Conditional Exclusion from Stormwater Permitting Based on No Exposure of Industrial Activities to Stormwater (PDF) (25 pp, 364K, About PDF).

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