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National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES)

Proposed National Rulemaking to Strengthen the Stormwater Program-Stakeholder Input

EPA is updating its stormwater strategy to focus on pursuing immediate actions to help communities address their stormwater challenges. The Agency has deferred action on a rulemaking to reduce stormwater discharges from newly developed and redeveloped sites and other regulatory changes to its stormwater program. Instead, EPA will be:

  • providing incentives, technical assistance, and tools to communities to encourage them to implement strong stormwater programs,  
  • leveraging existing requirements to strengthen municipal stormwater permits, and
  • continuing to promote green infrastructure as an integral part of stormwater management.

EPA believes this approach will achieve significant, measurable, and timely results in reducing stormwater pollution and provide significant climate resiliency benefits to communities.

National Stakeholder Input

On December 28, 2009, EPA issued a notice in the Federal Register asking for the public’s input to help shape a program to reduce stormwater impacts. Input was submitted in the form of written comments or in brief oral statements at a series of public listening sessions.

As described in the Federal Register notice, EPA was seeking input on:

  • expanding the area subject to federal stormwater regulation,
  • establishing specific requirements to control stormwater discharges from newly developed and redeveloped sites,
  • developing a single set of consistent stormwater requirements for all municipal separate storm sewer systems (MS4s),
  • requiring MS4s to address stormwater discharges in areas of existing development through retrofitting the sewer system or drainage area with improved stormwater control measures, and
  • exploring specific stormwater provisions to protect sensitive areas.

Listening Sessions

During January–March 2010, EPA held six public listening sessions to allow the public to provide input on regulatory actions that EPA is considering. Brief oral comments (three minutes or less) and written statements were accepted at the sessions.

EPA held a webcast as a “virtual” listening session on February 3, 2010. Following a presentation from EPA, the Agency invited members of the public to call in with brief statements. Audience members could listen to the webcast and all public statements through their computer speakers.

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Chesapeake Bay Stakeholder Input

Listening Sessions

EPA held seven public listening sessions in the Chesapeake Bay watershed to request input from the public. At each stormwater listening session, EPA summarized potential provisions of the stormwater rulemaking related to the Chesapeake Bay watershed. Members of the public were invited to make three minute statements to EPA, and a general question and answer session followed.

As part of the listening sessions, EPA addressed environmental justice considerations and potential impacts and benefits that could arise as a consequence of the rulemaking. The discussion included a presentation from EPA and a group discussion.

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