June 2005

National sewage blending policy not finalized

Washington, DC— Based on review of all public comments and congressional hearings, EPA will not finalize the sewage blending policy as proposed in November 2003.

“Blending is not a long-term solution,’’ said Benjamin Grumbles, assistant administrator for the Office of Water. “Our goal is to reduce overflows and increase treatment of wastewater to protect human health and the environment.”

To provide clarity in the ways peak wastewater flows are handled, the agency proposed a policy in November 2003 that addressed National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) requirements for municipal wastewater treatment during wet weather conditions. After receiving more than 98,000 public comments, the agency is now in the process of determining other options to address pollutant discharges during wet weather conditions.

EPA will continue to review policy and regulatory alternatives to develop the most feasible approaches to treat wastewater and protect communities, upstream and downstream. EPA will work with Congress, communities, and citizens on effective and efficient approaches that protect communities and ensure compliance with the Clean Water Act.

 


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