EPA Report: Keeping Raw Sewage and Contaminated Stormwater Out of the Public’s Water

Today EPA released a new report on sewage pollution in New York and New Jersey. The press release for the report points back to that horrible/awesome amateur youtube video of a CSO event on the Gowanus. Good times!  Other highlights…


The states of New York and New Jersey have been authorized by EPA to implement major portions of the Clean Water Act, including the permit program known as the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System. EPA works closely with the state water permitting authorities – the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection – to minimize or eliminate CSO discharges and implement the CSO Control Policy by ensuring permits contain requirements for implementing the nine minimum controls as well as controls identified in the permittees’ LTCPs.

EPA on Green Infrastructure

Green infrastructure is an approach to design that takes nature into account in order to mitigate the effects of existing and future growth on the environment. Green infrastructure includes techniques that can reduce, capture and treat stormwater runoff at its source before it reaches the sewer system. Site-specific practices, such as green roofs, downspout disconnections, rain harvesting/gardens, planter boxes, and permeable pavement are designed to mimic natural hydrologic functions and decrease the amount of impervious area and stormwater runoff from individual sites. The applications and design approaches can also be applied in neighborhood settings or on a larger regional scale (i.e., buffers along the banks of waterbodies and urban forestry) to manage stormwater. These applications and approaches can keep stormwater out of the sewer system to reduce overflows and to reduce the amount of untreated stormwater discharging to surface waters.

Leave a Reply