The federal regulations at 40 CFR 122.26 identify specific classes of industrial facilities that must apply for NPDES permit coverage. In addition, DEP may require any other facility not identified in the federal regulations to obtain a permit if DEP finds that the facility or activity is resulting in the discharge of pollutants to waters of the Commonwealth.
Update: New monitoring requirements, including Total Nitrogen and Total Phosphorus in all appendices, are included in the reissued PAG-03 General Permit. Those new monitoring requirements will automatically be added to exisiting permittees’ eDMRs for the July 1, 2023 – December 31, 2023 monitoring period. Please contact RA-EPDMR@pa.gov if the parameters in eDMR do not match the applicable appendix.
Notice of a reissued PAG-03 General Permit was published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin on December 24, 2022 for a new 5-year term. The reissued PAG-03 General Permit became effective on March 24, 2023. Existing permittees were required to submit Notice of Intent (NOI) on or before March 23, 2023 to maintain coverage under the reissued PAG-03 General Permit.
If a facility is not eligible for coverage under the PAG-03 General Permit, it may apply for an individual NPDES permit, using DEP's Individual NPDES Permit Application for Industrial Stormwater (3800-PM-BCW0403). A common reason that a facility may not be eligible for PAG-03 General Permit coverage is location in a High Quality or Exceptional Value watershed, according to designated uses under Chapter 93 or existing uses determined by DEP.
Individual permit coverage is generally for five years, with a requirement to submit a renewal application at least 180 days prior to the permit coverage expiration date if the discharge of pollutants will continue after the expiration date.
For those facilities that qualify for PAG-03 General Permit coverage, an alternative to obtaining permit coverage is to request No Exposure Certification if the facility qualifies.
In general, all industrial materials and activities must be stored and conducted indoors or under roof for a facility to qualify for No Exposure Certification. The No Exposure Certification alternative is not available to facilities in High Quality or Exceptional Value watersheds, and must be renewed every five years.
DEP has developed a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document to assist the regulated community in understanding industrial stormwater permits and No Exposure Certification.
For more information, contact the Bureau of Clean Water's Division of NPDES Permitting at RA-EPNPDES_Permits@pa.gov or 717-787-5017.