Friday, July 14, 2017

DEP Mass Certifies Potentially Thousands Of Nutrient Reduction Credits In Chesapeake Bay Watershed

The Department of Environmental Protection published notice in the July 15 PA Bulletin of a mass certification of nutrient credits under the Nutrient Credit Trading Program in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed from wastewater treatment plants.
Using this process, municipal wastewater plants would not have to go through the regular certification process.
This mass certification could potentially make thousands of credits available to those facilities that may need them, primarily other wastewater facilities.  Most of the credits would be from nitrogen and some phosphorus.
Effective October 1, 2017, to be eligible to generate credits for sale, all Significant Sewage point source discharges with an assigned Cap Load (see Table 7-1 of the Phase 2 WIP Wastewater Supplement) must demonstrate treated effluent concentrations below 6.0 mg/L total nitrogen (TN) and 0.8 mg/L total phosphorous (TP) (that is, baseline concentrations) in accordance with the procedures described in the Phase 2 WIP Nutrient Trading Supplement.
Where more stringent effluent limitations for TN or TP, or both, are established in Part A of the NPDES permit for reasons other than assignment of a Cap Load, the permittee must meet those more stringent effluent limits before it may generate credits.
In addition:
-- To generate credits, facilities must demonstrate they are in compliance with their NPDES permit.
-- The total amount of credits the facility is certified to generate cannot exceed its permitted Cap Load.
-- The calculation of credits will be made using formulas described in the Phase 2 WIP Nutrient Trading Supplement.
-- This point source certification will expire on September 30, 2019.
To ensure that verification is complete in time for credit availability to be posted on the Department website, facilities are encouraged to provide the Department with their verification requests by October 28th of each year.
Verification requests must include a complete Annual Chesapeake Bay Spreadsheet for the compliance year in which the credits were generated (October 1 through September 30).
This spreadsheet, verification forms and instructions can be found at the Department's Nutrient Trading webpage.

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