Water: Industry Effluent Guidelines
Implementation & Compliance
Implementation of effluent guidelines occurs under two EPA programs, depending on the way a facility discharges its wastewater: the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) program for direct dischargers and the pretreatment program for indirect dischargers. Brief information on each of these programs is provided below. For industry-specific information, see the Industrial Regulations page.
DMR Pollutant Loading Tool: The Discharge Monitoring Report (DMR) Pollutant Loading Tool is a new tool designed to help you determine who is discharging, what pollutants they are discharging and how much, and where they are discharging. The tool calculates pollutant loadings from permit and DMR data from EPA‘s Permit Compliance System (PCS) and Integrated Compliance Information System for the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (ICIS-NPDES). Data is available for the years 2007 through 2010. Pollutant loadings are presented as pounds per year and as toxic-weighted pounds per year to account for variations in toxicity among pollutants. The tool ranks dischargers, industries, and watersheds based on pollutant mass and toxicity, and presents “top ten” lists to help you determine which discharges are important, which facilities and industries are producing these discharges, and which watersheds are impacted.
- Pretreatment and Discharges to Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTWs)
- Integrated Compliance Information System (ICIS)
- Permit Compliance System (PCS)
- Compliance and Enforcement
Facilities discharging wastewater directly into waters of the U.S. are permitted under the NPDES. As authorized by the Clean Water Act, the NPDES permit program controls water pollution by regulating point sources that discharge pollutants into waters of the United States. This link to the NPDES permit program , provides technical and regulatory information, answers to frequent questions, links, and contacts.
Pretreatment and Discharges to Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTWs)
Facilities discharging wastewater to POTWs are considered indirect dischargers and are regulated under the EPA's pretreatment program. The General Pretreatment Regulations establish responsibilities of Federal, State, and local government, industry and the public. The objective of pretreatment standards is to control pollutants from the industrial users which may pass through or interfere with POTW treatment processes or which may contaminate sewage sludge. On the linked page you can find information on pretreatment standards and limits, answers to frequent questions, links, and contacts.
Integrated Compliance Information System (ICIS)
The Integrated Compliance Information System (ICIS) supports the information needs of the national enforcement and compliance program as well as the unique needs of the NPDES program. ICIS will integrate data that is currently located in several separate data systems. NPDES federal and state data will be added starting in 2006.
Permit Compliance System (PCS)
The Permit Compliance System (PCS) is the national database used to track compliance with NPDES Permit requirements for major dischargers. You can review information on when a permit of a major discharger was issued and expires, how much the company is permitted to discharge, and the actual monitoring data showing what the company has discharged. This page provides links to database information, including laws and regulations, customized queries of the database, and contacts. PCS will eventually be superseded by ICIS.
Compliance and Enforcement
EPA's compliance and enforcement program monitors compliance with effluent guidelines and other Agency regulations with the help of states and tribes and takes enforcement actions when necessary. EPA provides information, environmental management tools and incentives to assist businesses in complying with the law. This site provides basic information, how-to’s, and contacts.