Public Listening Session; Stakeholder Input on Peak Flows Management, 44623-44625 [2018-19016]

Download as PDF daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 170 / Friday, August 31, 2018 / Notices displays a currently valid OMB control number. DATES: Additional comments may be submitted on or before October 1, 2018. ADDRESSES: Submit your comments, referencing Docket ID Number EPA– HQ–OECA–2017–0640 to (1) EPA online using www.regulations.gov (our preferred method), by email to docket.oeca@epa.gov, or by mail to: EPA Docket Center, Environmental Protection Agency, Mail Code 28221T, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20460, and (2) OMB via email to oira_submission@omb.eop.gov. Address comments to OMB Desk Officer for EPA. EPA’s policy is that all comments received will be included in the public docket without change including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes profanity, threats, information claimed to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Michelle Stevenson, Office of Compliance, Monitoring, Assistance, and Media Programs Division, Pesticides, Waste & Toxics Branch (2225A), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: (202) 564–4203; fax number: (202) 564–0085; email: stevenson.michelle@epa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Supporting documents, which explain in detail the information that the EPA will be collecting, are available in the public docket for this ICR. The docket can be viewed online at www.regulations.gov or in person at the EPA Docket Center, EPA West, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW, Washington, DC. The telephone number for the Docket Center is 202–566–1744. For additional information about EPA’s public docket, visit http://www.epa.gov/ dockets. Abstract: Producers of pesticides and pesticide devices must maintain certain records with respect to their operations and make such records available for inspection and copying as specified in Section 8 of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) and in regulations at 40 CFR part 169. This information collection is mandatory under FIFRA Section 8. It is used by the Agency to determine compliance with FIFRA. Form Numbers: None. Respondents/affected entities: Producers of pesticides and pesticide devices for sale or distribution in or exported to the United States. VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:42 Aug 30, 2018 Jkt 244001 Respondent’s obligation to respond: Mandatory (40 CFR 169). Estimated number of respondents: 28,566 (total). Frequency of response: Annually. Total estimated burden: 57,132 hours (per year). Burden is defined at 5 CFR 1320.3(b). Total estimated cost: $7,545,424 (per year), which includes no annualized capital or operation & maintenance costs. Changes in the Estimates: There is an increase of 28,238 hours in the total estimated burden currently identified in the OMB Inventory of Approved ICR Burdens. This increase is due to an adjustment in the estimates of the number of respondents. Courtney Kerwin, Director, Regulatory Support Division. [FR Doc. 2018–18954 Filed 8–30–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560–50–P ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA–HQ–OW–2018–0420; FRL–9983–12– OW] Public Listening Session; Stakeholder Input on Peak Flows Management Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is interested in the views of the public on possible approaches to updating the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) regulations related to the management of peak wet weather flows at Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTWs) treatment plants serving separate sanitary sewer collection systems. Consequently, EPA is inviting interested members of the public to three planned listening sessions on: October 16, 2018 at EPA Headquarters in Washington, DC, October 24, 2018 at EPA Region 7 in Lenexa, Kansas, and October 30, 2018 to be held online. EPA welcomes oral or written information at the listening sessions as well as any other information the public may wish to provide EPA through the docket (Docket ID No. EPA–HQ–OW–2018–0420). DATES: The in-person listening sessions will be held at EPA Headquarters in Washington, DC on October 16, 2018 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. EDT; and in EPA Region 7 in Lenexa, Kansas on October 24, 2018 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. CDT. In addition to the in-person listening sessions, EPA will hold an online listening session on October 30, 2018 from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. EDT. SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00062 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 44623 For those who intend to submit written statements to the docket, EPA is asking that this information be provided before October 31, 2018. ADDRESSES: The in-person listening sessions will be held at the following locations: • For the EPA Headquarters in Washington, DC listening session: US EPA Headquarters, William Jefferson Clinton East Building, Room 1153, 1201 Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20004; • For the EPA Region 7 listening session: 11201 Renner Blvd., Lenexa, KS 66219. The online listening session will be accessible though https://www.epa.gov/ npdes/peak-flows-sewage-treatmentplants. To register for any of the listening sessions go to: https://www.epa.gov/ npdes/peak-flows-sewage-treatmentplants. To submit written information to EPA: Submit any written statements or input, identified by Docket ID No. EPA–HQ– OW–2018–0420, to the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http:// www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or withdrawn. EPA may publish any comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and should include discussion of all points you wish to make. EPA will generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary submission (i.e., on the web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For additional submission methods, the full EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please visit http:// www2.epa.gov/dockets/commentingepadockets. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jamie Piziali, Water Permits Division, Office of Water, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: 202–564–1709; or email: peakflowsrule@epa.gov. Also see the following website for additional information regarding the rulemaking: https://www.epa.gov/npdes/municipalwastewater. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: E:\FR\FM\31AUN1.SGM 31AUN1 44624 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 170 / Friday, August 31, 2018 / Notices I. General Information daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES A. Public Listening Session i. Public Listening Sessions: EPA will hold two public listening sessions to gather feedback from interested members of the public on the issues and concerns that the Agency should be aware of during this rulemaking. The public listening sessions will begin with EPA providing a brief background on peak flows management issues and EPA’s goals for this rulemaking. This will then be followed by an opportunity for the public to provide input on these issues. EPA is asking that oral statements be limited to three minutes or less and is welcoming written statements at the sessions. Each listening session will begin at 9:00 a.m. local time and continue until all those wishing to speak have had a chance to provide comments, or until 2:00 p.m., whichever comes first. A transcript of oral remarks made during the listening sessions will be at https://www.epa.gov/ npdes/municipal-wastewater and included in the rulemaking docket. ii. Online Listening Session: In addition to the in-person listening sessions, EPA will also hold a ‘‘virtual’’ listening session via a webcast on October 30, 2018, from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. EDT. The same format will be followed as that for the in-person listening session. After a presentation from EPA, members of the public may call in and give brief (three-minute or less) statements. Audience members will be able to listen to the webcast and all public statements through their computer speakers. A transcript of oral remarks made during the listening sessions will be at https://www.epa.gov/ npdes/peak-flows-sewage-treatmentplants and included in the rulemaking docket. B. Additional Information and Public Meeting Registration Prior to each listening session, EPA will post any relevant materials to the following website: https://www.epa.gov/ npdes/peak-flows-sewage-treatmentplants. Information posted to the website will include any handouts that may be provided at the meeting as well as a web link that participants may use to register for the public meeting in advance. Advanced registration is not required, but is requested so that EPA can ensure there is sufficient space and time allotted for those who wish to participate. The listening session will continue until all speakers in attendance have had a chance to provide comments, or the listed end time, whichever comes first. If you choose not to pre-register to speak, it is VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:42 Aug 30, 2018 Jkt 244001 recommended that you arrive at the start of the listening session to register in person in order to ensure the opportunity to participate. II. Background EPA is providing the following background information to assist the public in preparing for the listening sessions. Under the Clean Water Act (CWA), municipal sewage treatment plants or Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTWs) treatment plants are required to comply with prescribed restrictions on their discharges to a water of the United States. Specifically, each POTW must obtain an NPDES permit that will require, at a minimum, that the treatment plant’s discharge meet effluent limitations for secondary treatment. See CWA § 1311(b)(1)(B) and § 1342(a), 40 CFR 133 and 40 CFR 122.44(a)(1). The permit will also require meeting any more stringent effluent limitations that are necessary to meet applicable water quality standards. See CWA § 1311(b)(1)(C), § 1342(a), and 40 CFR 122.44(d). The permit will also require the POTW operator to comply with other terms and conditions based on the NPDES regulations at 40 CFR 122. These include, for example, requirements regarding monitoring and reporting of discharges and proper operation and maintenance of POTW facilities and systems of treatment. Many sewage treatment processes may be used to comply with these effluent requirements. Most municipalities use a series of unit processes to treat wastewater prior to discharge including the following: • Preliminary treatment or screening to remove large solids, • primary clarification (or preliminary sedimentation) to remove floating and settleable solids, • biological treatment (also referred to as secondary treatment) to remove biodegradable organic pollutants and suspended solids, and • disinfection to deactivate pathogens. Some facilities also provide more advanced treatment, which is designed to reduce constituents, such as nitrogen and phosphorus, that are not removed in any significant quantity by traditional biological treatment processes. Sanitary sewer collection systems are designed to remove wastewater from homes and other buildings and convey it to a wastewater treatment plant. The collection system is a critical element in the successful performance of the POTW’s wastewater treatment operation. Collection systems are designed in one of two ways. Combined sewer systems are designed to collect PO 00000 Frm 00063 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 both stormwater and sanitary wastewater for delivery to the treatment plant. By contrast, separate sanitary sewers are designed to carry only sanitary wastewater (separate sanitary sewers typically are built with some allowance, however, for higher flows that occur during storm events in order to handle minor and non-excessive amounts of stormwater or groundwater that enter the system through infiltration and inflow or ‘‘I/I’’). EPA notes that, at this time, it contemplates the scope of the rulemaking would be limited to peak flows at POTWs with separate sanitary sewer systems. Significant increases in flows at a treatment facility can create operational challenges and potentially adversely affect the treatment efficiencies. Biological treatment components at treatment plants are particularly vulnerable to high-volume peak flows. Where peak influent flows during periods of wet weather exceed the treatment capacity of existing biological or advanced treatment units, POTWs must consider ways in which to prevent damage to their treatment plant, while maintaining effective operation of the system to meet applicable NPDES permit limitations. Under these conditions, POTW operators use several different strategies which may include a combination of alternative treatment approaches, storage, and sewer maintenance and rehabilitation work to minimize the amount of stormwater that enters the collection system through I/I. Among the peak flow management approaches that have been used or considered are those involving the diversion of a portion of the peak flows around biological or advanced treatment units. The diverted flow is then recombined with flows from the biological treatment units. Other alternatives include the installation of various treatment processes at the POTW that supplement the plant’s ability to process and treat peak flows. Refer to EPA’s Draft Summary of Blending Practices and the Discharge of Pollutants for Different Blending Scenarios (EPA, June 2014) at https:// www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/ 2015-10/documents/sso_lit_review_ draft.pdf. These approaches have been the subject of previous EPA policymaking efforts that have not been adopted. See 68 FR 63042 (November 7, 2003), and 70 FR 76013 (December 22, 2005). EPA has also looked at the potential public health implications of these different approaches. See Summary of June 19–20, 2014, Experts Forum on Public Health Impacts of Blending (EPA, May 2015) at https:// E:\FR\FM\31AUN1.SGM 31AUN1 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 170 / Friday, August 31, 2018 / Notices www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/ 2015-10/documents/experts_forum_ summary.pdf. POTWs with separate sanitary sewer systems can also lessen the impact of peak flows by implementing a variety of strategies to minimize the introduction of stormwater into the collection system. While virtually every separate sanitary sewer system has some groundwater infiltration and stormwater-derived I/I, it may be considered excessive when it is the cause of overflows or causes disruptions in the treatment system. POTWs with excessive I/I have a number of different methods for identifying the largest sources of I/I in their sewer system. These include system mapping, flow monitoring, conducting smoke or dye tests, sensor technology, and using optical devices to view sections of the system. Developing plans for correcting and rehabilitating the highest priority sources of I/I into the collection system may involve such strategies as repairing manholes, replacing and repairing private building lateral pipes, ensuring building downspouts are not connected to the sewer system, sealing sewer joints, inserting sewer liners, or even replacing sections of the sewer line. Other strategies may focus on maximizing existing collection system capacity through real-time controls to optimize flows within the system, or building additional storage within the collection system or treatment plant. EPA acknowledges the significant expertise that exists among states, tribes, POTWs and municipal officials, engineering firms, public health agencies, and the public related to these issues. These listening sessions are designed to take advantage of this information from a variety of perspectives to help provide a complete picture of the considerations that should go into any rulemaking to address permitting requirements for the management of peak flows at POTWs with separate sanitary sewer systems. daltland on DSKBBV9HB2PROD with NOTICES III. Areas of Feedback Requested for Public Listening Sessions Interested members of the public who plan to provide oral or written testimony at the listening sessions, or to submit written material to EPA separately as detailed in the instructions provided in the ADDRESSES section of this notice, are welcome to provide their input on any issue related to the topic of peak flow management at POTW treatment plants with separate sanitary sewer systems. But EPA particularly welcomes feedback from the public on the following specific questions. VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:42 Aug 30, 2018 Jkt 244001 • What strategies have you found to be successful in reducing peak flow volumes at the POTW treatment plant? • What permitting or other regulatory approaches are you aware of that in your opinion provide a good basis for any rulemaking in this area? • What treatment technologies have POTWs with separate sanitary sewer systems used successfully to manage peak excess flows during wet weather? How effective are these technologies at meeting effluent limitations? What are examples of technologies addressing other pollutants not typically subject to discharge requirements in NPDES permits (e.g., pathogens)? Related to these questions, do you have supporting treatment efficacy data that you would be willing to share with EPA for this rulemaking? • What are your specific suggestions regarding conditions that could be included in NPDES permits to allow diversions of some peak flows around biological treatment units to protect the treatment plant? Considerations could include: —What information might the NPDES permitting authority need in order to determine whether such diversions are necessary to protect the treatment plant? —Should the number of times such diversions are permitted to occur be limited or reported? —Are there any requirements that should be considered for ensuring that the treatment plant is operated and maintained in an effective manner to minimize the number of peak flow diversions that occur? —What requirements would be appropriate for ensuring that maintenance of the collection system to minimize the introduction of stormwater into the sanitary system through inflow and infiltration is occurring? —What monitoring and reporting requirements would be important to demonstrate that applicable effluent limits are still being met? —How may the permit ensure that public and ecological health is protected? Authority: Clean Water Act, 33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq. Dated: August 24, 2018. Martha Shimkin, Acting Director, Office of Wastewater Management. [FR Doc. 2018–19016 Filed 8–30–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560–50–P PO 00000 Frm 00064 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 44625 ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [ER–FRL–9041–1] Environmental Impact Statements; Notice of Availability Office of Federal Activities, EPA. General Information (202) 564–7156 or https://www2.epa.gov/nepa/ Weekly receipt of Environmental Impact Statements Filed 08/20/2018 Through 08/24/2018 Pursuant to 40 CFR 1506.9. AGENCY: Notice Section 309(a) of the Clean Air Act requires that EPA make public its comments on EISs issued by other Federal agencies. EPA’s comment letters on EISs are available at: https:// cdxnodengn.epa.gov/cdx-enepa-public/ action/eis/search. EIS No. 20180192, Draft, BLM, AZ, Ten West Link 500kV Transmission Line Project Draft Environmental Impact Statement and Draft Resource Management Plan Amendments, Comment Period Ends: 11/29/2018, Contact: Joseph Incardine 801–560– 7135. EIS No. 20180193, Final, DOI, AK, Liberty Development and Production Plan Beaufort Sea, Alaska Final Environmental Impact Statement, Review Period Ends: 10/01/2018, Contact: Lauren Boldrick 907–334– 5200. EIS No. 20180194, Draft, FERC, OR, Swan Lake North Pumped Storage Project, Comment Period Ends: 10/15/ 2018, Contact: Dianne Rodman 202– 502–6077. EIS No. 20180195, Draft, BLM, WY, Leavitt Reservoir Expansion Project, Comment Period Ends: 10/15/2018, Contact: Holly Elliott 307–347–5100. EIS No. 20180196, Final, BLM, AK, Alpine Satellite Development Plan for the Proposed Greater Mooses Tooth 2 Development Project, Review Period Ends: 10/01/2018, Contact: Stephanie Rice 907–271–3202. EIS No. 20180197, Draft, BLM, WY, Lost Creek Uranium In-Situ Recovery Project Modifications, Comment Period Ends: 10/15/2018, Contact: Annette Treat 307–328–4314. EIS No. 20180199, Draft, USFWS, IA, Draft Environmental Impact Statement for Proposed Habitat Conservation Plan and Incidental Take Permit, Comment Period Ends: 10/15/2018, Contact: Kraig McPeek 309–757–5800. EIS No. 20180199, Final Supplement, TVA, KY, Shawnee Fossil Plant Coal E:\FR\FM\31AUN1.SGM 31AUN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 170 (Friday, August 31, 2018)]
[Notices]
[Pages 44623-44625]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-19016]


-----------------------------------------------------------------------

ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

[EPA-HQ-OW-2018-0420; FRL-9983-12-OW]


Public Listening Session; Stakeholder Input on Peak Flows 
Management

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Notice.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is interested in the 
views of the public on possible approaches to updating the National 
Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) regulations related to 
the management of peak wet weather flows at Publicly Owned Treatment 
Works (POTWs) treatment plants serving separate sanitary sewer 
collection systems. Consequently, EPA is inviting interested members of 
the public to three planned listening sessions on: October 16, 2018 at 
EPA Headquarters in Washington, DC, October 24, 2018 at EPA Region 7 in 
Lenexa, Kansas, and October 30, 2018 to be held online. EPA welcomes 
oral or written information at the listening sessions as well as any 
other information the public may wish to provide EPA through the docket 
(Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2018-0420).

DATES: The in-person listening sessions will be held at EPA 
Headquarters in Washington, DC on October 16, 2018 from 9:00 a.m. to 
2:00 p.m. EDT; and in EPA Region 7 in Lenexa, Kansas on October 24, 
2018 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. CDT. In addition to the in-person 
listening sessions, EPA will hold an online listening session on 
October 30, 2018 from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. EDT.
    For those who intend to submit written statements to the docket, 
EPA is asking that this information be provided before October 31, 
2018.

ADDRESSES: The in-person listening sessions will be held at the 
following locations:
     For the EPA Headquarters in Washington, DC listening 
session: US EPA Headquarters, William Jefferson Clinton East Building, 
Room 1153, 1201 Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20004;
     For the EPA Region 7 listening session: 11201 Renner 
Blvd., Lenexa, KS 66219.
    The online listening session will be accessible though https://www.epa.gov/npdes/peak-flows-sewage-treatment-plants.
    To register for any of the listening sessions go to: https://www.epa.gov/npdes/peak-flows-sewage-treatment-plants.
    To submit written information to EPA: Submit any written statements 
or input, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2018-0420, to the 
Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the 
online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments 
cannot be edited or withdrawn. EPA may publish any comment received to 
its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you 
consider to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other 
information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia 
submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written 
comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and 
should include discussion of all points you wish to make. EPA will 
generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of 
the primary submission (i.e., on the web, cloud, or other file sharing 
system). For additional submission methods, the full EPA public comment 
policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general 
guidance on making effective comments, please visit http://www2.epa.gov/dockets/commentingepa-dockets.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Jamie Piziali, Water Permits Division, 
Office of Water, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania 
Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: 202-564-1709; or 
email: [email protected]. Also see the following website for 
additional information regarding the rulemaking: https://www.epa.gov/npdes/municipal-wastewater.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

[[Page 44624]]

I. General Information

A. Public Listening Session

    i. Public Listening Sessions: EPA will hold two public listening 
sessions to gather feedback from interested members of the public on 
the issues and concerns that the Agency should be aware of during this 
rulemaking. The public listening sessions will begin with EPA providing 
a brief background on peak flows management issues and EPA's goals for 
this rulemaking. This will then be followed by an opportunity for the 
public to provide input on these issues. EPA is asking that oral 
statements be limited to three minutes or less and is welcoming written 
statements at the sessions. Each listening session will begin at 9:00 
a.m. local time and continue until all those wishing to speak have had 
a chance to provide comments, or until 2:00 p.m., whichever comes 
first. A transcript of oral remarks made during the listening sessions 
will be at https://www.epa.gov/npdes/municipal-wastewater and included 
in the rulemaking docket.
    ii. Online Listening Session: In addition to the in-person 
listening sessions, EPA will also hold a ``virtual'' listening session 
via a webcast on October 30, 2018, from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. EDT. 
The same format will be followed as that for the in-person listening 
session. After a presentation from EPA, members of the public may call 
in and give brief (three-minute or less) statements. Audience members 
will be able to listen to the webcast and all public statements through 
their computer speakers. A transcript of oral remarks made during the 
listening sessions will be at https://www.epa.gov/npdes/peak-flows-sewage-treatment-plants and included in the rulemaking docket.

B. Additional Information and Public Meeting Registration

    Prior to each listening session, EPA will post any relevant 
materials to the following website: https://www.epa.gov/npdes/peak-flows-sewage-treatment-plants. Information posted to the website will 
include any handouts that may be provided at the meeting as well as a 
web link that participants may use to register for the public meeting 
in advance. Advanced registration is not required, but is requested so 
that EPA can ensure there is sufficient space and time allotted for 
those who wish to participate. The listening session will continue 
until all speakers in attendance have had a chance to provide comments, 
or the listed end time, whichever comes first. If you choose not to 
pre-register to speak, it is recommended that you arrive at the start 
of the listening session to register in person in order to ensure the 
opportunity to participate.

II. Background

    EPA is providing the following background information to assist the 
public in preparing for the listening sessions. Under the Clean Water 
Act (CWA), municipal sewage treatment plants or Publicly Owned 
Treatment Works (POTWs) treatment plants are required to comply with 
prescribed restrictions on their discharges to a water of the United 
States. Specifically, each POTW must obtain an NPDES permit that will 
require, at a minimum, that the treatment plant's discharge meet 
effluent limitations for secondary treatment. See CWA Sec.  
1311(b)(1)(B) and Sec.  1342(a), 40 CFR 133 and 40 CFR 122.44(a)(1). 
The permit will also require meeting any more stringent effluent 
limitations that are necessary to meet applicable water quality 
standards. See CWA Sec.  1311(b)(1)(C), Sec.  1342(a), and 40 CFR 
122.44(d). The permit will also require the POTW operator to comply 
with other terms and conditions based on the NPDES regulations at 40 
CFR 122. These include, for example, requirements regarding monitoring 
and reporting of discharges and proper operation and maintenance of 
POTW facilities and systems of treatment.
    Many sewage treatment processes may be used to comply with these 
effluent requirements. Most municipalities use a series of unit 
processes to treat wastewater prior to discharge including the 
following:
     Preliminary treatment or screening to remove large solids,
     primary clarification (or preliminary sedimentation) to 
remove floating and settleable solids,
     biological treatment (also referred to as secondary 
treatment) to remove biodegradable organic pollutants and suspended 
solids, and
     disinfection to deactivate pathogens.
    Some facilities also provide more advanced treatment, which is 
designed to reduce constituents, such as nitrogen and phosphorus, that 
are not removed in any significant quantity by traditional biological 
treatment processes.
    Sanitary sewer collection systems are designed to remove wastewater 
from homes and other buildings and convey it to a wastewater treatment 
plant. The collection system is a critical element in the successful 
performance of the POTW's wastewater treatment operation. Collection 
systems are designed in one of two ways. Combined sewer systems are 
designed to collect both stormwater and sanitary wastewater for 
delivery to the treatment plant. By contrast, separate sanitary sewers 
are designed to carry only sanitary wastewater (separate sanitary 
sewers typically are built with some allowance, however, for higher 
flows that occur during storm events in order to handle minor and non-
excessive amounts of stormwater or groundwater that enter the system 
through infiltration and inflow or ``I/I''). EPA notes that, at this 
time, it contemplates the scope of the rulemaking would be limited to 
peak flows at POTWs with separate sanitary sewer systems.
    Significant increases in flows at a treatment facility can create 
operational challenges and potentially adversely affect the treatment 
efficiencies. Biological treatment components at treatment plants are 
particularly vulnerable to high-volume peak flows. Where peak influent 
flows during periods of wet weather exceed the treatment capacity of 
existing biological or advanced treatment units, POTWs must consider 
ways in which to prevent damage to their treatment plant, while 
maintaining effective operation of the system to meet applicable NPDES 
permit limitations. Under these conditions, POTW operators use several 
different strategies which may include a combination of alternative 
treatment approaches, storage, and sewer maintenance and rehabilitation 
work to minimize the amount of stormwater that enters the collection 
system through I/I.
    Among the peak flow management approaches that have been used or 
considered are those involving the diversion of a portion of the peak 
flows around biological or advanced treatment units. The diverted flow 
is then recombined with flows from the biological treatment units. 
Other alternatives include the installation of various treatment 
processes at the POTW that supplement the plant's ability to process 
and treat peak flows. Refer to EPA's Draft Summary of Blending 
Practices and the Discharge of Pollutants for Different Blending 
Scenarios (EPA, June 2014) at https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-10/documents/sso_lit_review_draft.pdf. These approaches have 
been the subject of previous EPA policymaking efforts that have not 
been adopted. See 68 FR 63042 (November 7, 2003), and 70 FR 76013 
(December 22, 2005). EPA has also looked at the potential public health 
implications of these different approaches. See Summary of June 19-20, 
2014, Experts Forum on Public Health Impacts of Blending (EPA, May 
2015) at https://

[[Page 44625]]

www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-10/documents/
experts_forum_summary.pdf.
    POTWs with separate sanitary sewer systems can also lessen the 
impact of peak flows by implementing a variety of strategies to 
minimize the introduction of stormwater into the collection system. 
While virtually every separate sanitary sewer system has some 
groundwater infiltration and stormwater-derived I/I, it may be 
considered excessive when it is the cause of overflows or causes 
disruptions in the treatment system. POTWs with excessive I/I have a 
number of different methods for identifying the largest sources of I/I 
in their sewer system. These include system mapping, flow monitoring, 
conducting smoke or dye tests, sensor technology, and using optical 
devices to view sections of the system. Developing plans for correcting 
and rehabilitating the highest priority sources of I/I into the 
collection system may involve such strategies as repairing manholes, 
replacing and repairing private building lateral pipes, ensuring 
building downspouts are not connected to the sewer system, sealing 
sewer joints, inserting sewer liners, or even replacing sections of the 
sewer line. Other strategies may focus on maximizing existing 
collection system capacity through real-time controls to optimize flows 
within the system, or building additional storage within the collection 
system or treatment plant.
    EPA acknowledges the significant expertise that exists among 
states, tribes, POTWs and municipal officials, engineering firms, 
public health agencies, and the public related to these issues. These 
listening sessions are designed to take advantage of this information 
from a variety of perspectives to help provide a complete picture of 
the considerations that should go into any rulemaking to address 
permitting requirements for the management of peak flows at POTWs with 
separate sanitary sewer systems.

III. Areas of Feedback Requested for Public Listening Sessions

    Interested members of the public who plan to provide oral or 
written testimony at the listening sessions, or to submit written 
material to EPA separately as detailed in the instructions provided in 
the ADDRESSES section of this notice, are welcome to provide their 
input on any issue related to the topic of peak flow management at POTW 
treatment plants with separate sanitary sewer systems. But EPA 
particularly welcomes feedback from the public on the following 
specific questions.
     What strategies have you found to be successful in 
reducing peak flow volumes at the POTW treatment plant?
     What permitting or other regulatory approaches are you 
aware of that in your opinion provide a good basis for any rulemaking 
in this area?
     What treatment technologies have POTWs with separate 
sanitary sewer systems used successfully to manage peak excess flows 
during wet weather? How effective are these technologies at meeting 
effluent limitations? What are examples of technologies addressing 
other pollutants not typically subject to discharge requirements in 
NPDES permits (e.g., pathogens)? Related to these questions, do you 
have supporting treatment efficacy data that you would be willing to 
share with EPA for this rulemaking?
     What are your specific suggestions regarding conditions 
that could be included in NPDES permits to allow diversions of some 
peak flows around biological treatment units to protect the treatment 
plant? Considerations could include:

--What information might the NPDES permitting authority need in order 
to determine whether such diversions are necessary to protect the 
treatment plant?
--Should the number of times such diversions are permitted to occur be 
limited or reported?
--Are there any requirements that should be considered for ensuring 
that the treatment plant is operated and maintained in an effective 
manner to minimize the number of peak flow diversions that occur?
--What requirements would be appropriate for ensuring that maintenance 
of the collection system to minimize the introduction of stormwater 
into the sanitary system through inflow and infiltration is occurring?
--What monitoring and reporting requirements would be important to 
demonstrate that applicable effluent limits are still being met?
--How may the permit ensure that public and ecological health is 
protected?

    Authority: Clean Water Act, 33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq.

    Dated: August 24, 2018.
Martha Shimkin,
Acting Director, Office of Wastewater Management.
[FR Doc. 2018-19016 Filed 8-30-18; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 6560-50-P