ALEXANDRIA, VA. — On May 6, the Water Environment Federation’s (WEF) board of trustees approved a revised position on stormwater management designed to protect water quality and advance its long-standing involvement in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) stormwater regulatory program. The revised position includes recommendations to improve the national stormwater program and provides a platform from which related policy can be developed.
“WEF members recognize that innovative and non-traditional approaches are needed to address stormwater challenges of the 21st century,” said Executive Director Jeff Eger. “This revision reflects the best thinking from water quality experts about how to best address stormwater from a national perspective, and it will be the basis of our comments to EPA next week on their recently released call for comments on the November 2010 memo on stormwater Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs).”
The position statement recommends updating regulations under EPA’s Clean Water Act (CWA) that oversee stormwater-generated flows and outlines several recommendations for improved stormwater management, including use of a volume-based approach for stormwater treatment, support of green infrastructure, flexibility in the stormwater regulatory framework, consideration of climate change, and integration of a watershed-based approach into permitting. It also supports points consistent with several 2009 National Research Council recommendations such as increased funding and support for monitoring efforts and associated costs.
WEF will continue to meet with leading water organizations to solidify consensus and principles for a unified approach to stormwater management in anticipation of the new EPA rule expected out this fall.
“While wastewater treatment facilities have done a tremendous job in addressing point source pollution, nonpoint source pollution such as stormwater runoff is a huge contributor to water quality problems in this country, and WEF has been involved with EPA’s stormwater program since it began the early 1990s,” said Eger. “We’ll continue to focus on this major challenge to clean water by participating actively in legislative and regulatory developments, and providing the technical assistance and resources water quality professionals need.”
View WEF’s entire position statement at www.wef.org/GovernmentAffairs/PolicyandPositionStatements.