DAR File No. 38530
This rule was published in the September 15, 2014, issue (Vol. 2014, No. 18) of the Utah State Bulletin.
Environmental Quality, Water Quality
Requirements for Waste Discharges
Change in Proposed Rule
DAR File No.: 38530
Filed: 09/02/2014 05:00:12 PM
Purpose of the rule or reason for the change:
This change incorporates modifications to proposed Subsection R317-1-3(3.3) that address public concerns that were submitted during the original comment period relating to the implementability and effectiveness of Technology-Based Phosphorus Effluent Limits, proposed exceptions, and water quality monitoring requirements.
Summary of the rule or change:
This change in proposed rule (CPR) consists of five principal modifications to the original proposed rule: 1) the term "exception" to the rule was changed to "variance" to better reflect the need for division approval of conditions that would allow a permittee to offramp from rule requirements and to clarify that such variances may be revisited periodically to validate continued applicability; 2) the exception in Subsection R317-1-3(3.3)(C)(2), which provided a rule offramp for de minimis discharges of phosphorus, was deleted entirely. This exception established 10% impact on receiving stream water quality as de minimis, which was determined to be unworkable and problematic. Another exception (now variance in Subsection R317-1-3(3.3)(C)(2)(c)) allows permittees to establish no deleterious effect from their discharge and be offramped; 3) the exception in Subsection R317-1-3(3.3)(C)(3) (now a variance in Subsection R317-1-3(3.3)(C)(2)(b)) provides an offramp for economic hardship that could result should a permittee be required to implement the proposed rule. The CPR clarifies that publicly owned treatment works (POTS) must pursue low interest loan and grant opportunities to minimize costs and potential economic hardship before the variance would be applied. The proposed variance change also allows non-POTWs to demonstrate economic hardship, e.g., for industry, to the division on a case-by-case basis to qualify for the variance. In the case of demonstrated hardship, alternative technology-based limits may be applied; 4) a variance was added to allow permittees the opportunity to propose innovative alternative approaches such as nutrient trading with other facilities that meet the spirit of the proposed rule without necessarily meeting the prescribed effluent limits; and 5) water quality monitoring requirements associated with implementing the proposed rule were modified for facilities that discharge less than 5,000,000 gallons per day. For these facilities, monitoring frequencies were increased to one sampling event each month. (DAR NOTE: The original proposed amendment upon which this change in proposed rule (CPR) was based was published in the June 1, 2014, issue of the Utah State Bulletin, on page 141. Underlining in the rule below indicates text that has been added since the publication of the proposed rule mentioned above; strike-out indicates text that has been deleted. You must view the CPR and the proposed amendment together to understand all of the changes that will be enforceable should the agency make this rule effective.)
State statutory or constitutional authorization for this rule:
- Title 19, Chapter 5
Anticipated cost or savings to:
the state budget:
There is no anticipated cost or savings to the state budget as a result of these proposed changes. They would remain the same as estimated in the original amendment.
The total aggregate anticipated costs for local governments would change $150,000 per year statewide.
There are no anticipated changes to costs for small businesses since most of the changes affect POTWs.
persons other than small businesses, businesses, or local governmental entities:
It is anticipated that these changes would increase the costs to other persons $275,000 per year statewide.
Compliance costs for affected persons:
No changes to the compliance costs for affected persons due to the proposed changes.
Comments by the department head on the fiscal impact the rule may have on businesses:
The changes in this rule are to incorporate the suggestions received during the comment period. Although there are costs involved with implementing these changes, they allow greater flexibility to obtain the goal of reducing future pollution of the state's waters, while controlling the costs of doing so.
Amanda Smith, Executive Director
The full text of this rule may be inspected, during regular business hours, at the Division of Administrative Rules, or at:Environmental Quality
Water QualityRoom DEQ, Third Floor
195 N 1950 W
SALT LAKE CITY, UT 84116
Direct questions regarding this rule to:
- Judy Etherington at the above address, by phone at 801-536-4344, by FAX at 801-536-4301, or by Internet E-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Interested persons may present their views on this rule by submitting written comments to the address above no later than 5:00 p.m. on:
This rule may become effective on:
Walter Baker, Director
R317. Environmental Quality, Water Quality.
R317-1. Definitions and General Requirements.
R317-1-3. Requirements for Waste Discharges.
3.1 Compliance With Water Quality Standards.
All persons discharging wastes into any of the waters of the State shall provide the degree of wastewater treatment determined necessary to insure compliance with the requirements of Rule R317-2 Water Quality Standards, except that the Director may waive compliance with these requirements for specific criteria listed in R317-2 where it is determined that the designated use is not being impaired or significant use improvement would not occur or where there is a reasonable question as to the validity of a specific criterion or for other valid reasons as determined by the Director.
3.2 Compliance With Secondary Treatment Requirements.
All persons discharging wastes from point sources into any of the waters of the State shall provide treatment processes which will produce secondary effluent meeting or exceeding the following effluent quality standards.
A. The arithmetic mean of BOD values determined on effluent samples collected during any 30-day period shall not exceed 25 mg/l, nor shall the arithmetic mean exceed 35 mg/l during any 7-day period. In addition, if the treatment plant influent is of domestic or municipal sewage origin, the BOD values of effluent samples shall not be greater than 15% of the BOD values of influent samples collected in the same time period. As an alternative, if agreed to by the person discharging wastes, the following effluent quality standard may be established as a requirement of the discharge permit and must be met: The arithmetic mean of CBOD values determined on effluent samples collected during any 30-day period shall not exceed 20 mg/l nor shall the arithmetic mean exceed 30 mg/l during any 7-day period. In addition, if the treatment plant influent is of domestic or municipal sewage origin, the CBOD values of effluent samples shall not be greater than 15% of the CBOD values of influent samples collected in the same time period.
B. The arithmetic mean of SS values determined on effluent samples collected during any 30-day period shall not exceed 25 mg/l, nor shall the arithmetic mean exceed 35 mg/l during any 7-day period. In addition, if the treatment plant influent is of domestic or municipal sewage origin, the SS values of effluent samples shall not be greater than 15% of the SS values of influent samples collected in the same time period.
C. The geometric mean of total coliform and fecal coliform bacteria in effluent samples collected during any 30-day period shall not exceed either 2000 per 100 ml or 200 per 100 ml respectively, nor shall the geometric mean exceed 2500 per 100 ml or 250 per 100 ml respectively, during any 7-day period; or, the geometric mean of E. coli bacteria in effluent samples collected during any 30-day period shall not exceed 126 per 100 ml nor shall the geometric mean exceed 158 per 100 ml respectively during any 7-day period. Exceptions to this requirement may be allowed by the Director where domestic wastewater is not a part of the effluent and where water quality standards are not violated.
D. The effluent values for pH shall be maintained within the limits of 6.5 and 9.0.
E. Exceptions to the 85% removal requirements may be allowed where infiltration makes such removal requirements infeasible and where water quality standards are not violated.
F. The Director may allow exceptions to
the requirements of Subsections R317-1-3.2.A, R317-1-3.2.B, and
R317-1-3.2.D where the discharge will be of short duration and
where there will be [
of ]no significant detrimental effect on receiving
water quality or downstream beneficial uses.
G. The Director may allow that the BOD5 and TSS effluent concentrations for discharging domestic wastewater lagoons shall not exceed 45 mg/l for a monthly average nor 65 mg/l for a weekly average provided the following criteria are met:
1. the lagoon system is operating within the organic and hydraulic design capacity established by Rule R317-3;
2. the lagoon system is being properly operated and maintained;
3. the treatment system is meeting all other permit limits;
4. there are no significant or categorical industrial users (IU) defined by 40 CFR Part 403, unless it is demonstrated to the satisfaction of the Director that the IU is not contributing constituents in concentrations or quantities likely to significantly affect the treatment works; and
5. a Waste Load Allocation (WLA) indicates that the increased permit limits would not impair beneficial uses of the receiving stream.
3.3 Technology-based Limits for
Total Phosphorus Limits]
1. All non-lagoon treatment works discharging wastewater to surface waters of the state shall provide treatment processes which will produce effluent less than or equal to an annual mean of 1.0 mg/L for total phosphorus.
phosphorus effluent limit identified in Subsection
R317-1-3.3] shall be achieved by January 1, 2020.
B. Discharging Lagoons -Phosphorus Loading Cap
technology-based effluent limit for phosphorus]
will be instituted for discharging treatment lagoons. Instead, each
discharging lagoon will be evaluated to determine the current
annual average total phosphorus load based on average flows and
concentrations. Absent field data to determine these loads, they
will be estimated by the Division.
2. A cap of 125% times the current average
annual total phosphorus load will be established. Once the
s have] been reached
the owner of the facility will have five years to
construct treatment processes or implement treatment alternatives
to prevent the total phosphorus loading cap from being
Where an existing TMDL has allocated a total phosphorus
wasteload to a treatment works, no
technology-based limit] or
loading cap, as applicable, [ for total phosphorus ]will be applied.
2. If the owner of a discharging treatment works can
demonstrate that the discharge from the treatment works will not
increase the total phosphorus concentration in the receiving water
beyond 10%, no technology-based limit or loading cap, as
applicable, for total phosphorus will be applied. 3]. If the owner of a discharging treatment works can
demonstrate that imposing [ a technology-based limit ] or
loading cap [ for phosphorus ]would result in an economic
hardship for the users of the treatment works, no [ technology-based limit] or
loading cap [ for phosphorus ]will be applied. "Economic
is defined as sewer
service [ fees], as a result of implementing a [ technology-based limit] or
loading cap[ for phosphorus], [ being] greater than 1.4% of the median adjusted gross
household income of the service area based on the latest
information compiled by the Utah Tax Commission
4]. If the owner of a discharging treatment works can
demonstrate that the [ technology-based limit identified in Subsection
R317-1-3.3.A,] or [ the] loading cap [ identified in Subsection R317-1-3.3.B, ]are
clearly unnecessary to protect waters downstream from the point of
[ the technology-based limit] or [ the] loading cap[ , as applicable,] will [ not ]be applied.
D]. For treatment works required to implement
[ technology-based limits] or a
loading cap[ for total phosphorus], the demonstration under
Subsection R317-1-3.3.C must be made by January 1, 2018. Unless
this demonstration is made, the owner of the
treatment works must proceed to implement the
[ technology-based limit] or
loading cap, as applicable, in accordance with,
respectively, Subsections R317-1-3.3.A and R317-1-3.3.B.
1. All discharging treatment works [
with reasonable potential to discharge nitrogen or
phosphorus ]are required to implement, at a minimum,
[ influent] monitoring [ for total phosphorus and total Kjeldahl nitrogen
concentrations, and effluent monitoring for total phosphorus,
ammonium (as N), ortho phosphorus, nitrate-nitrite (as N) and total
Kjeldahl nitrogen, as follows]:
annually for treatment works with flows less than 1
quarterly for treatment works with flows greater than 1 mgd
and less than 5 mgd; or c. monthly for treatment works with flows greater than 5
All monitoring under Subsection R317-1-3.3.[
E] shall be based on 24-hour composite samples
3]. These monitoring requirements shall be self-implementing
beginning January 1, 2015.
3.4 Pollutants In Diverted Water Returned To Stream.
A user of surface water diverted from waters of the State will not be required to remove any pollutants which such user has not added before returning the diverted flow to the original watercourse, provided there is no increase in concentration of pollutants in the diverted water. Should the pollutant constituent concentration of the intake surface waters to a facility exceed the effluent limitations for such facility under a federal National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit or a permit issued pursuant to State authority, then the effluent limitations shall become equal to the constituent concentrations in the intake surface waters of such facility. This section does not apply to irrigation return flow.
KEY: water pollution, waste disposal, nutrient limits, effluent standards
Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment: 2014
Notice of Continuation: October 2, 2012
Authorizing, and Implemented or Interpreted Law: 19-5
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For questions regarding the content or application of this rule, please contact Judy Etherington at the above address, by phone at 801-536-4344, by FAX at 801-536-4301, or by Internet E-mail at email@example.com. For questions about the rulemaking process, please contact the Division of Administrative Rules.