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Division of Water Reissues KPDES Permit for Discharge of Construction Storm Water with More Stringent Requirements

The Kentucky Division of Water has reissued its general KPDES permit authorizing the discharge of storm water from construction activities.  The reissued permit which will take effect on August 1, 2009 will apply to construction projects involving one acre or more of surface disturbance but will not apply to projects that discharge to certain special waters that are afforded a higher level of protection.  The Kentucky Division of Water estimates that more than 500 new construction projects will fall within the scope of the reissued permit each year.

The reissued permit imposes far more stringent requirements than have previously been imposed on operators of construction projects including the following:

  • Authorization to discharge will now be provided upon written notification from the Division of Water rather than automatically 48 hours after submission of a notice of intent.  The Division of Water has committed to respond to notices of intent submitted in an electronic format within 7 days of receipt by the Division and to respond within 30 days of receipt of notices submitted in non-electronic format.
  • Permittees must develop and implement a storm water pollution prevention plan capable of controlling the discharge of pollutants from a 2-year 24-hour storm event including identification of potential sources of contaminated runoff, practices that would reduce pollutants in the discharge, and erosion control facilities such as storm water retention basins.  Implementation of such control practices is expected to pose a special problem for linear facilities, such as sewer lines, water lines, and utility rights-of-way where terrain limitations exist.
  • Operators of construction projects must provide and maintain a 25-foot buffer zone between the edge of surface disturbance and the receiving stream and a 50-foot buffer zone if the receiving stream is impaired for sediment or siltation.  If the required buffer zone cannot be maintained, the operator of the construction project may utilize an effective protective alternative and explain in the storm water pollution prevention plan why the alternative is effectively protective.
  • Operators commencing construction activities under the reissued permit after August 1, 2009 must comply with the new requirements upon beginning the discharge of contaminated storm water. Ongoing projects that have submitted notices of intent to discharge construction storm water and that have developed and implemented a storm water pollution prevention plan prior to August 1, 2009 may continue under the previous requirements until August 1, 2010.

Since the reissued permit has the potential to delay or otherwise limit a broad array of construction projects across Kentucky, it is very important that the planning of such activities include consideration of the reissued general KPDES permit for the discharge of storm water from construction activities.

If you have any questions regarding mineral, energy or natural resources legal issues, please feel free to contact any member of Greenebaum's Environmental and Natural Resources Team.

Even though the content of the above Greenebaum Doll & McDonald e-bulletin is primarily informative, state and federal law obligates us to inform you that this is an advertisement. You have received this advisory because you are a client or friend of the firm.

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